County Councillor hits out at plans to cut Archive and Archaeology Service budget - The Redditch Standard

County Councillor hits out at plans to cut Archive and Archaeology Service budget

Ross Crawford 13th Jan, 2019   0

REDDITCH County Councillor Robin Lunn has hit out at plans to cut 60 per cent from the budget of Worcestershire’s Archive and Archaeology Service.

The service, which cares for all the county’s historic documents and keeps the past alive through archaeological digs, is facing losing £405,000 from its £751,000 budget as part of swingeing County Hall cuts.

“This department has won awards for being one of the best archive services in the country, so how have the controlling Conservatives arrived at this figure?” said Coun Lunn (Redditch North), leader of the county’s Labour group.

The service currently employs 25 people but their future would be in doubt if the cuts went ahead.

In response the Labour group has tabled a motion for the authority’s next full council meeting this coming Thursday calling on the service to be protected.

“We think the service can be saved; what they are proposing is short sighted and once it is gone it will never come back,” said Coun Lunn who blamed central government’s failure to properly fund adult social care and childrens services for the crisis.

“The demands of paying for these are like two rocks squeezing everything else in the middle and when everyone has been made redundant what will be left?

“I’m desperately hoping the county’s Tory leadership will show some commonsense and give it another year so we can find a solution.”

Councillor Lucy Hodgson (Con, Malvern Chase) cabinet member for communities, said: “We are proposing to make savings of £400,000 from the Archive and Archaeology Service as part of the wider savings that the council needs to make in the coming years.

“The detail around this is yet to be decided.

“We’ll be consulting with staff who work in the service this month before the final budget is set in February.”

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