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Anonymous donor ends museum's woes

By This is Dorset  |  Posted: March 16, 2010

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AN anonymous donation from a local resident has put an end to Bruton Museum's financial difficulties.

Douglas Learmond, chairman of the voluntary group which runs the museum in the High Street, said they are breathing a sigh of relief after someone came forward with a generous offer to help pay their annual rent.

In December Mr Learmond told The Western Gazette that due to Government funding cuts, South Somerset District Council may not be able to provide revenue support grant for 2010.

Mr Learmond said: "A local person walked in and said they will ensure we can afford the rent. This means our cloud of doubt has lifted. It is amazing. They would like to remain anonymous."

Before the offer museum volunteers feared they would have to do a lot more fundraising in order to operate at full strength.

There is no official obligation for the council to provide a grant for the museum, but council area east chairman Mike Lewis said support and advice on attracting funding from other sources would be available to help it become more self sufficient.

The museum has recently received a capital grant for carpeting, lighting and a display case at the museum. It applied for £20,000 from Viridor and received £10,000.

Mr Learmond said the museum was delighted to receive this along with further funding totalling around £5,000 from the town council, district council and Somerset County Council. This would leave £5,000 needed to finance the project.

Bruton-based graphic designers Lucy Or Robert is offering to provide new graphics to assist the museum's image.

"Using its services is the difference between making a nice panel and a superb one," Mr Learmond said.

A new artist called Sarah Richards is presenting a glove puppets workshop as part of the latest Casespace at Bruton Museum.

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