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> Glasgow To Lose Burrell Collection, Sir William Burrell's wishes to be discarded
post 15th Sep 2013, 02:09pm
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It was all supposed to be so different. When Stephen Purcell, the former leader of Glasgow City Council, created Glasgow Life on April Fool's Day in 2007*, he boasted that transferring the management of the city's cultural assets to a private company would benefit Glasgow. Since then, Glaswegians have experienced a reduction in opening hours at our museums and libraries, suffered rising prices at our leisure venues, and had to endure the introduction of entrance fees to exhibitions ... even when those exhibitions consisted mainly of works owned by us.

Last week, however, bosses at Glasgow Life went a step further in imperilling the proud reputation of our great city when they formally petitioned the Scottish government to overturn the unambiguous wishes of Sir William Burrell regarding his generously bequeathed collection. Councillor Archie Graham and Glasgow Life boss Bridget McConnell visited Holyrood to ask the Scottish government to sideline Sir William's deed of covenant that stated clearly that the Burrell Collection should not be broken up and sent abroad.

Missing the main point regarding breaking up the internationally-renowned collection, Graham and McConnell argued that Sir William could not possibly have foreseen the advent of air freight transporation. The two Glasgow Life bosses put forward the most tenuous of cases in spite of the fact that Sir William clearly re-stated and reinforced in a 1953 codicil the conditions of his bequest after he discovered that the council had sent two paintings from the collection to Switzerland – against his written will. In response to the council's (then corporation’s) flagrant disregard of Sir William's wishes, the highly-successful shipping magnate and entrepreneur wrote:

''The Memorandum of Agreement with the Corporation only gives permission to lend items from the collection to any public gallery in Great Britain. That stipulation was made to safeguard the items from damage. Had I known in time it would not have been allowed. It mustn't occur again.''

For its part, the council subsequently gave Sir William an unqualified assurance that ''in view of your strongly expressed attitude to lending you may be assured there will be no further loans overseas, and that requests for loans within Scotland and England will be closely scrutinized, but rarely granted.''

Now, however, using the pretext of the need for the Burrell Collection building in Pollok Park to undergo a ‘George Square-style revamp‘ – apparently there’s a leaky roof – Glasgow Life and council bosses claim that the 30-year-old building needs to be shut to the public for up to five years. During this time, Glasgow Life intends to tout the artefacts in the collection worldwide; thereafter, the company will transport priceless and vulnerable works of art to the highest bidders around the globe.

A growing list of international experts is now condemning Glasgow’s intentions, including Dr Nicholas Penny, the director of the National Gallery in London, who last week said that moving works of art had led to several major accidents, incidents and damage to works, many of which have not come to public attention. In response, Glasgow Life claimed that there had been no damage to any of the (non-Burrell) items shipped around the world in the last five years.

UPDATE 31/12/2014:
Youtube video remembering The Burrell Collection


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Posts in this topic
- GG   Glasgow To Lose Burrell Collection   15th Sep 2013, 02:09pm
- - Jupiter   What kind of people are we dealing with when they ...   15th Sep 2013, 02:31pm
- - fourbytwo   ...."what kind of people are we dealing with....   15th Sep 2013, 02:54pm
- - Betsy2009   When I was working in Kent I totally refurbished a...   15th Sep 2013, 03:12pm
|- - TeeHeeHee   QUOTE (Betsy2009 @ 15th Sep 2013, 03:10pm...   15th Sep 2013, 04:00pm
- - carmella   A Covenant should be upheld, what on earth are the...   15th Sep 2013, 03:22pm
- - Heather   I'm disgusted by this decision. The Collecti...   15th Sep 2013, 03:34pm
- - *Sandy Brown*   Come on folks, give the Scottish MPs some credibil...   15th Sep 2013, 03:50pm
- - Harrymc   What part of Sir William Burrell's instruction...   15th Sep 2013, 04:41pm
|- - Talisman   QUOTE (Harrymc @ 15th Sep 2013, 04:39pm) ...   15th Sep 2013, 11:43pm
|- - Harrymc   QUOTE (Talisman @ 15th Sep 2013, 11:41pm)...   16th Sep 2013, 10:23am
- - frame   The Burrell Collection. I'm very ashamed to ha...   15th Sep 2013, 04:43pm
- - norrie123   Perhaps they are hoping to rise the cost of the re...   15th Sep 2013, 04:54pm
- - myagnes   Why not let the World see the Burrell Collection, ...   15th Sep 2013, 04:58pm
- - Jupiter   myagnes,the way I see it no one has the authority ...   15th Sep 2013, 05:10pm
- - twig64   Maybe the bill for the Commonwealth Games has come...   15th Sep 2013, 05:12pm
- - john.mcn   C'mon guys Bridget McConnell is paid a 6 figur...   15th Sep 2013, 05:13pm
|- - twig64   QUOTE (john.mcn @ 15th Sep 2013, 05:11pm)...   15th Sep 2013, 06:03pm
|- - carmella   QUOTE (john.mcn @ 15th Sep 2013, 06:11pm)...   16th Sep 2013, 10:40am
- - chas1937   I stay next too Pollok Park and was at the opening...   15th Sep 2013, 08:06pm
- - Jazzsaxman   My Son showed me something funny the other week wh...   15th Sep 2013, 11:05pm
- - Albanach   It is downright dishonesty and betrayal of trust ...   15th Sep 2013, 11:18pm
- - DavidT   I was also at the opening of the Burrell. It means...   15th Sep 2013, 11:28pm
- - Mary   If they break up the famous collection then who is...   16th Sep 2013, 03:14am
- - tarzan   Is anyone surprised? Does anyone think that Bridge...   16th Sep 2013, 07:20am
- - Jupiter   I was wondering if Burrell has any descendants sti...   16th Sep 2013, 08:27am
- - *LizN*   I totally agree with Frame's comments in his l...   16th Sep 2013, 09:30am
- - Scots Kiwi Lass   On my last trip to my home town (2011), I was priv...   16th Sep 2013, 09:33am
- - Harrymc   Thank you for your enlightened reply to my post.I ...   16th Sep 2013, 10:28am
- - Landales   I understand Glasgow needs money but I don't c...   16th Sep 2013, 11:36am
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