HELP SAVE BROADFIELD HOUSE GLASS MUSEUM
YOUR VOICE counts
I too received the rather underwhelming email from cll Karen Shakespeare. Rereading it in a number of other places has not improved my opinion of it. As has been said it seems to be very much a letter that had to be sent out.
There had heard a rumour, now confirmed by a counsellor, that it was indeed the staff at Broadfield House who had been 'commissioned' to undertake the feasibility study. In my opinion, this is just a ruse to say that the thing was ongoing, after all those same staff also have to continue with all their other duties whilst undertaking the study - so how long would it end up taking..........?
It still doesn't explain the logic of making the decision BEFORE the result of the feasibility study was known. What sort of 'joined-up thinking' is that?
How do they expect people who do not have the experience of doing such a study to produce something that is adequate for the task? Leave alone the question of asking/instructing demoralised staff to actively participate in their own job loss? That is, of course, providing that the outcome were to prove that there was indeed a saving! On the other hand, if there were no saving there is a possibility that the staff could be accused of bias. All in all, not a satisfactory way of going about such an important analysis.
Concerning rumour, there has been very little allowed to creep into our observations on the board, since it would not benefit the argument against the decision to downsize the museum (however none of us are perfect, since this is such a contentious subject :huh:). Wherever possible things have been checked out to try to eliminate this occurrence.
As for thoughts about the current economic climate, and possible replacement building(s) of similar size to Broadfield House.
Firstly, I think we are all aware of that climate, either directly or through the media.
Secondly, the purpose of the exercise is to stop this ridiculous decision being made. Then, and only then, can we become constructive. The campaign must surely have demonstrated the strength of feeling about this, the ONLY, dedicated public glass museum in this country, which is recognised worldwide, by other museums, as well as collectors, researchers, writers, and, dare I mention, dealers.
The aim for the future of the museum has long been to increase its size to house all the facilities it has, so that the archive and store(s) are all under one roof along with the displays of glass - however, to that end the much favoured Himley Hall solution sadly never came about.
If the council wants everthing centred in one area it has long been my contention that part of the old Stuart's White House site would be the logical place as there are two buildings and space for car parking there that would quite probably fit the bill. I have found, through this campaign, that I am not the only person to consider this a possible solution (and yes, that would involve major capital outlay).
Had the council any nouce about them, they would see that there is a great deal of goodwill, not to mention knowledge and experience, out here that could be harnessed to good effect, but not until they see the light and understand the value and quality of what they hold in trust for generations to come - whether local, national or international. This is the history of the area, that is of interest to a large audience.
While I'm about it I really don't think the huge experience and ability of the staff that have so ably kept Broadfield House running is as highly valued as it should be. It may be their job, but they're darn good at it.
As a final thought, planning to move any museum is a long term consideration involving a number of logistical factors that takes time. To try and cram this process into a small time frame is only likely to lead to distaster - just as in the same way if you don't prepare when you move house!!