The councillor helping to lead Coventry’s bid for UK City of Culture has moved to allay fears that the Herbert Art Gallery could close.
Cllr Faye Abbott, Coventry City Council’s Cabinet Member for the city of culture bid, said: “The cultural assets in The Herbert, which is managed by Culture Coventry, belong to the people of Coventry.
“The Herbert is one of the jewels in our heritage crown and will play an important part in our bid to be city of culture.
“We’ve been working closely with Culture Coventry as it faces big challenges to meet the long term savings needed across all the organisations we grant fund as a result of spending cuts that have been imposed on us by the government.
“We’ve been very clear with Culture Coventry that it needs to look closely at its running and management costs across the entire organisation including the Transport Museum and Lunt Roman Fort. Any proposal to do anything as drastic as closing The Herbert would not be supported by councillors.
“We’re happy to work with the Chief Executive and his management team to identify savings that could help them face the challenges ahead and avoid any threat to this much loved asset.”
Cllr Ann Lucas, Leader of the Council said: “I’m sorry the Chief Executive of Culture Coventry feels he can’t guarantee the future of one of our best loved assets – we’re clear as a Council that closure is not an option we want to see.
“The Council is happy to work with the organisation to help it identify a way forward and will make sure Culture Coventry explores all the options available.”