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Cheltenham Art Gallery

Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum Development Fundraising Campaign reaches £4.5 million! crack

Over the last six months, the Fundraising Campaign, Building for a New Future, has reached a total of just over £4.5 million in confirmed funding towards the new extension/refurbishment of the Art Gallery & Museum. The Art Gallery & Museum Development Trust launched the Phase II Fundraising Campaign last November with a target of £1,970,000 to reach by March 2011.

Jane Lillystone, Museum, Arts & Tourism Manager, said: “The good news is that the Campaign is currently on target, which given the current financial climate, is extremely encouraging. Since January this year, over £697k has been committed from major trusts and foundations, including a £100k grant from the Museums, Libraries, Archives Council - for the refurbishment and re-interpretation of the Arts and Crafts Movement collection gallery (linking into the new extension) – and another generous amount of £70k from the Friends of Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum (which hits their own fundraising target of £150k). We also achieved a first-round pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund for £750k.”

The overall target for the Campaign is £6.3 million – which leaves an outstanding total of c. £1.7 million required to complete the scheme. Out of this amount, the Art Gallery & Museum team are working extremely hard on completing the second-round bid to the Heritage Lottery for a grant of £750k - and the aim is to raise a further £450k by the end of 2010, so that construction can start from spring 2011. If all goes to plan, that would then leave a final £500k to find for the fitting-out programme (to complete the project), and an opening in late 2012 for the long-awaited transformation of Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum.

Graham Lockwood, Chairman of the Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum Development Trust, said 'We are now very close to the financial target needed to start work on this visionary development which will enable so much more of the museum's collection and exciting new exhibitions to be displayed as well as providing other enhanced facilities for the town and its visitors. The next three months is a crucial time in terms of securing the future of the project and I hope that all those in the community who are able to help us financially will come forward and share in this final effort to ensure the start of building work on schedule.'

Councillor Steve Jordan commented:
"In difficult times a lot of people are working hard to make sure this key project happens and many generous donations have been pledged. I would like to thank all those involved for their efforts so far and in anticipation for the work still needed to complete the job."

The Art Gallery & Museum will continue to remain open until 24 December 2010 – but there will be some partial closure of the galleries (within the Summerfield Galleries, from the 20th-century area, and including the Arts and Crafts Movement gallery), from mid-September, so that work can begin on the de-canting of the stores and the start of the refurbishment work on the Arts and Crafts Movement gallery.