Tessa Jowell has lashed out at claims she wants to 'dismantle' English Heritage and hand over its historic properties to the National Trust.
In a letter to EH's chairman Neil Cossons, the secretary of state for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport says she is 'astounded and infuriated' by rumours that appeared in the press on Sunday (13 March).
The letter says: 'I have no plans to close the organisation, nor have there been any bitter rows between us. Nor do I plan to hand control of your historic sites to the National Trust or anyone else.' Stories about the possible overhaul of EH have been around for some time. But Jowell, who ruled out a structural change last year, claims she has no plans to revisit her previous decision.
She also said she believed the heritage world could better represent heritage if it spoke with one voice, but added, 'this is different from calling for your organisation's abolition'.