Liverpool

Liverpool conservation centre to close

National Conservation Centre
Image caption Several members of staff at the conservation centre are likely to be affected

Liverpool's National Conservation Centre will close to visitors next week as a result of government budget cuts.

The centre is run by National Museums Liverpool, which received a 15% cut to its budget in October.

A spokesman said it was no longer possible to afford to keep the Whitechapel venue open and it would close at 1700 GMT next Friday.

Sudley House and Piermaster's House at the Albert Dock, which were threatened with closure, will remain open.

Several members of staff at the conservation centre are likely to be affected by its closure, but managers hope they can find them other positions within the organisation.

The centre, which opened in 1996, is both a visitor venue and a place for museum staff to conserve and restore objects.

Behind-the-scenes conservation work will continue and will not be affected by the closure of the visitor part of the building, which occupies only 10% of the space.

Dr David Fleming, director of National Museums Liverpool, said: "We have been scrutinising every aspect of National Museums Liverpool to make savings and we cannot avoid making decisions like this.

"Despite budget cuts, all our venues will remain free entry so as many people as possible can enjoy the wonderful things we have to offer and we are determined to ride out the funding storm.

"This is a major reason for keeping open Sudley House and Piermaster's House."

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