The union, which represents more than 6,000 specialists across the sector, from archaeologists and conservators to museum and gallery assistants, points to research suggesting that for every £1 invested, the economy gets up to £5 in return.
Prospect negotiator Sarah Ward, said: “The heritage sector, which includes museums, galleries, historic gardens, and library collections, has already had to absorb significant cuts in public funding over the last five years.
“We are not asking for handouts. The sector has been working hard to increase revenues from commercial sources, but on their own these are insufficient to sustain heritage in the near term.
“Heritage funding should be regarded as a good investment, which more than pays for itself through a multiplier effect. Tourism is a great example of this, where those drawn to the country by its rich cultural heritage spend significant amounts of money on hotels, restaurants, and shopping.
“The sector’s ability to contribute to the economy in this way has already been weakened by government funding cuts and the very real fear is that further cuts will cause irreparable damage to Britain’s reputation as a world-class destination for heritage.”
One of the best ways you can show your support is by tweeting a selfie giving a “high-five” to @ProspectUnion using the #High5Heritage hashtag, telling us why you think George Osborne should keep his hands off heritage in the spending review.
The spending review will set out the government’s four-year plan for reducing spending by £20bn. Unprotected departments such as the Department for Culture, Media and Sport have been asked to table proposals for spending cuts of between 25-40%.
Last year Prospect published a report, Heritage in a Cold Climate, looking at how the sector is already being affected by spending cuts.
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