Eastbourne gallery facing ‘catastrophic’ cut in funding

Emma Morris: 'This move potentially threatens the very survival of the town's flagship cultural institution'
Emma Morris: 'This move potentially threatens the very survival of the town's flagship cultural institution'
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Eastbourne’s Towner Art Gallery will struggle to survive if hard-hitting ‘catastrophic’ cash cuts are introduced, according to the venue’s boss.

Director Emma Morris says that plans to reduce the funding for the gallery by 50 per cent could mean job losses, a drop in the number of exhibitions and the loss of learning programmes with vulnerable groups in the community.

“This is a move that potentially threatens the very survival of the town’s flagship cultural institution,” said Miss Morris.

“A cut on this scale would have a catastrophic effect on the gallery, a much diminished cultural experience for Eastbourne’s residents and visitors and will inevitably threaten other crucial funding sources.

“If other funding sources are lost as a result of our reduced offer it would ultimately mean the complete closure of the gallery.”

Miss Morris said the borough council has proposed to cut its investment to the award- winning gallery by half to £300,000 a year.

A council spokesperson said, “Eastbourne recently received one of the worst reductions in Government funding. Our priority to avoid cuts to frontline public services is unchanged but spending on statutory and non-statutory services is under review.”