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Update on BCLM's plans for re-opening

Plans to re-open update

10 June 2020

Following ongoing Government announcements regarding reopening of open spaces, and now wildlife attractions, we are aware that some people may assume BCLM should now re-open too.

Unfortunately this is not currently possible. BCLM is an accredited museum, so in accordance with Government guidance we would have not looked to re-open any earlier than Step 3, currently 4 July 2020.

Whilst we are lucky to be situated on a 26-acre largely open air site, the nature of our Museum and visitor day out, lots of small properties and close interactions with historic characters and other staff, means we need to take more time to make sure we are safe place for staff and visitors; so we will remain closed until our planned phased re-opening on 1 August 2020.

We are very busy planning the re-opening, which places great emphasis on the health and safety of both visitors and staff, and have been delighted by the very large and positive reaction to our visitor survey about these measures.

Once we do re-open, we will have new health and safety measures across the Museum including limiting visitor numbers. We need time to plan and install these new measures in order to ensure that we are prepared, so that we can open safely and we can stay open.

As a Museum that prides itself on being at the core of our community, and relying on visitor income for over 90% of our funding, being closed for nearly three months at this point means we must be measured in the way we begin to incur large costs again. The Government's Job Retention Scheme has been a lifeline to us during this period and our planned re-opening will allow us to create, once again, a fun day out for our visitors balanced with our fiscal responsibilities.

We completely understand the pressing needs of zoos to re-open more quickly than museums as their fixed costs have not reduced during the lockdown period due to their commitment to the welfare of their animals. Their need to create income again is particularly understandable.

Please respect our decision to remain closed at this time, and we look forward to welcoming you back to the Museum in August.

In the meantime, be safe, and keep connecting with us via our digital channels.

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