Support Your Museums, Says Loyd TV Star Vows to Fight Bureaucracy on Behalf of Wales's Proud Heritage

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Byline: Rhodri Evans

TELEVISION star Loyd Grossman yesterday hit out at Assembly plans that could end an initiative to get the public into museums.

The star of Masterchef and Through the Keyhole pledged he would launch next year's Museums Month, even if he has to do it in a car-park.

The annual event is staged by the Council of Museums in Wales (CMW) to encourage more people to visit museums and galleries across the country. But the CMW is to be swallowed up by a new libraries, archives and museums unit of the National Assembly called CyMAL.

And there are concerns that the CyMAL bureaucrats based in Aberystwyth will not have the same interest in Museums and Galleries Month, undoing many years of hard work in encouraging people to value their local museums.

Speaking at the launch of this year's event at Chepstow Museum TV personality and chairman of the Campaign for Museums, Loyd Grossman took a swipe the new civil-servant staffed CyMAL through a play on words.

``We all know that a camel is a horse designed by a committee,'' he said.

``We will look forward to it with interest and we will lobby them very hard.

``Whatever happens I shall be back in Wales next year to celebrate Museums and Galleries Month - even if I do it myself, standing in a car-park.

``We will lobby CyMAL mercilessly and force them to do the right thing.''

Mr Grossman warned that small museums needed all the support they could get.

``When Museums and Galleries Month started - rather modestly as Museums Week - the reason it started was that some of us felt there was a grave danger that people were beginning to take their mu-seums and galleries for granted.

``I am afraid nowadays that things that get taken for granted tend to wither and lose support and that is detrimental to all of us.

``Museums and galleries are not just about people, but for people.''

Robert Francis Davies, chairman of the Council of Museums in Wales, said he was genuinely concerned for the future of Museums and Galleries Month admitting he felt a ``tremendous amount'' of trepidation about CyMAL. …