HC Deb 02 March 1984 vol 55 cc355-6W
Mr. Robert Atkins

asked the Under-Secretary of State answering in respect of the Arts whether the National Maritime museum will be permitted to retain any of the proceeds of its proposed general admission charges.

Mr. Waldegrave

My noble Friend the Minister for the Arts wishes to support the national museums and galleries in sensible programmes of self-help whenever it is possible to do so. He has therefore approved an interim arrangement for 1984–85, whereby the National Maritime museum may retain and spend the whole of the net proceeds (after deducting collection costs) from the general admission charges which the museum proposes to introduce in April. In accordance with the National Maritime Museum Act 1934, the museum's detailed proposals for the use of the retained proceeds will be a matter for separate agreement with my noble Friend, within the general framework that they should involve no longer-term revenue commitments at this stage. Any unspent balance at the end of 1984–85 will be liable to be surrendered to the Exchequer in the normal way.

This arrangement applies to the National Maritime museum's receipts from general admission charges. The museum's 1984–85 recurrent Vote allocation will remain as announced, and its other income will continue for the time being to be treated in the same way as that of other national museums and galleries, under the existing net Vote and re-Vote system. As indicated in its observations (Cmnd. 9127) on the eighth report, 1981–82, from the Education, Science and Arts Committee, however, the Government will review the net Vote and re-Vote system, with the aim of introducing any revised arrangements applying generally to the national museums and galleries from 1985–86.

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