The Royal Pavilion has received a welcome boost through a National Lottery Heritage Emergency Fund grant of £235,000.
Like many cultural institutions, the financial repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic affected Royal Pavilion & Museums and the wider culture sector in Brighton & Hove with closure of venues through the Summer, cutting off income from visitors.
Between April and June, Royal Pavilion & Museums lost £1.3m through closure – a heavy blow as nearly 70% of the running costs are covered by earned income from ticket sales, retail, programmes, and events.
Welcoming visitors back
Royal Pavilion & Museums will use the money to support making the necessary changes and adjustments to cope with Covid-19, such as implementing new Covid safety measures across the Royal Pavilion & Museums sites to assist with their phased reopening and expanding the digital and online experience for visitors.
The money will also go towards marketing to attract more UK visitors as the city has been popular within the ‘staycation’ market, as well as supplying PPE to keep staff and visitors safe.
It was vital to secure funding as Royal Pavilion & Museums is reliant on income from admissions, retail and location hire to support and maintain the Grade I and II listed historic buildings, the collections of millions of objects, art works and cultural and community activities.
This funding will also be used to invest in a business review to explore new income streams, as like many attractions reliant on international visitors, it is not expected that income from oversees visitor admissions will recover for at least 3 years.
Without this emergency support the service and its collections and the historic buildings, which need constant maintenance, would have been at risk.
Throughout the lockdown, staff have been working with Public Health England, Brighton & Hove City Council, the Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust and unions to follow government guidelines and ensure the buildings and work environments are safe for both visitors and staff.
The Royal Pavilion is now open, and visitors can see more than 120 stunning original items of Royal Pavilion decorations on loan from Her Majesty the Queen. Find out more about visiting the re-opened Royal Pavilion.
Preston Manor re-opens to the public on 11 September, and features a new fun and fascinating animal trail for families. Find out more about Preston Manor re-opening.
Both venues feature:
- Pre-booked entry times to ensure safe social distancing
- Hand sanitiser stations at entry points
- Perspex screens and barriers
- New one-way visitor routes and reconfigured retail spaces
Councillor Marianna Ebel, joint chair of the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee said: “This grant will provide a much-needed lifeline for the Royal Pavilion & Museums.
“With the uncertainty that lies ahead for our cultural institutions and museums, this is great news for these buildings, the collections and those who look after them. They are part of the fabric of our city.”
“I’d like to encourage everyone to have a look at what the Royal Pavilion & Museums have to offer as they have some truly unique collections and provide a warm welcome to all their visitors.”
Visitors can book their timed slot online by visiting: https://www.maximweb.net/brightonmuseums/events/