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The Lighthouse to go into administration

  • 28 Comments

Scotland’s centre for architecture, the Lighthouse, is set to go into administration

The news, which has been blamed on a lack of income from commercial activities, follows a board meeting last night.

In a statement released to the AJ chairman of the board of trustees-Eleanor MacAllister OBE said: ‘It has been a heartbreaking decision for me and the board to bring in administrators to the Lighthouse Trust. 

‘We know the devastating effect this will have on our staff and on the partners working with us on our projects.  We have done everything possible to avoid this, but the options before us were very limited in the current economic downtown.

‘Last year we put in place, with additional support from our main funders the City Council and the Scottish Government, a crisis package to secure our immediate future to enable us to continue our education and exhibition programmes at the Lighthouse.

‘Unfortunately that new package was very dependent on maintaining the income generated from our commercial activities.  The Lighthouse business model has always required commercial income to subsidise its extensive programme. 

She added: ‘No other gallery in Scotland has to generate such a high percentage of its income from commercial sources.  However, the extra income we needed from rents, grants, conference and events just did not materialise as businesses, funders and charitable trusts cut back on their activities when the credit crunch hit.’

The Board will now work together with the administrators and the City Council to find a future of the A-listed Charles Rennie Mackintosh-designed building where the Lighthouse was based.

MacAllister added: ‘We are also working to protect some of the Lighthouse’s key activities and exhibitions and to maintain public access.  Most of all, we want to find a way for the Lighthouse to continue in some way to fulfil its role as Scotland’s National Centre for Architecture, Design and the City.’

  • 28 Comments

Readers' comments (28)

  • Could you add a brief sentence simply to say (a) what financial support / day would keep the Lighthouse viable and (b) what the war in Iraq costs us / day?
    Thank you.

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  • Iraq war costs 2,000k a second, you might get Norman Foster as a Director for that.

    Lighthouse seems to need just the continuing financial support from Scottish government and Glasgow City Council at the same level as before

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  • According to yesterday's Scotsman (http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/Light--dims-as-cash.5580441.jp) the Lighthouse received £2,970,000 in grants in the 2007/2008 fiscal year.

    That works out at about £8,136 per day, or 9p per second. Regardless of your thoughts on the spending priorities of the British and Scottish governments, I regard that level of dependence on external funding as both unsustainable and very risky.

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  • The Lighthouse would not be in this state if Peter Wilson was the Director. To read his weekly wrap see the Prospect website

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  • Another reason not to put a cultural organisation in the provinces. There's no interest, locals would rather spend their free time in a shopping centre.

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  • Glasgow is only intersted in binge drinking and over spending on plastic...Scotland with Style...?

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  • Edinburgh-Scotland with Substance. Glasgow should never have got it in the first place, it's culturally barren and Edinburgh is the capital city after all. Peter Wilson led a great bid in the mid 90's but Glasgow's politica "mafia" defeated him.

    He's is the only one now able to get it out of this problem I read all about his considered analysis on his weekly wrap. He's the real deal. I can't wait until his next wrap on Prospect

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  • Shame Peter Wilson is so often wrong. Funny, but wrong.

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  • What does the Lighthouse actually offer (as opposed to what it is meant to offer)...there is very little going on in it...plus the shop is expensive and very niche market...ie aimed at architects looking to buy coffee table books rather than balancing content between the professional visitor and the lay person + Vitra wont sell in Glasgow!

    Its a great piece of architecture...a Page and Park gem...BUT the exhibitions just are not up to standard...the John Lautner one was very poor in my opinion...the cafe is expensive too (which is a shame because the staff are very pleasant up there)

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  • With regards to what the Lighthouse offers, aside from the ongoing exhibitions and workshops, The Lighthouse houses the CEC (Creative Entrepreneurs Club). The CEC's a massive network for the creative industries and an example of what The Lighthouse is all about. It's active in supporting and innovating design in Glasgow. The CEC have been responsible for bringing a lot of interesting ideas and events to Glasgow that may not have generated money but have been very inspiring for designers and students.

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