Admissions to museums & historical sites down 10% in 2011

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Admissions to museums & historical sites down 10% in 2011A survey conducted among 68 museums and historical sites across Malta and Gozo revealed that these sites registered 1.9 million admissions last year, down by 10 per cent over 2010.

In 2011, the number of active museums and historical sites in Malta and Gozo stood at 68, the same as the previous year. More than half the sites were owned by Private or Church Organisations; the rest were owned by the State. Less than 40 per cent were managed by the State while nearly a third were managed by voluntary or non-profit organisations. The remaining 30 per cent were run either by the Church or by a private enterprise.

Just over a quarter of all museums and historical sites were Ethnology and Anthropology museums, 22 per cent were monuments and sites, and 16 per cent were Archaeology and History museums. Over three quarters of the museums and historical sites had a regularly updated website, while 27 per cent of all sites had a digitisation programme for its collections.

Total admissions were 1.9 million, over half of whom were adults and a quarter were group entries. Paid admissions accounted for the majority of admissions. Art museums had the highest proportion of admissions, at 35 per cent. Monuments and sites, and Archaeology and History museums continued to be the most popular, with 28 and 25 per cent of total admissions respectively.

In 2011, full-time paid staff employed by museums and historical sites continued declining as in previous years, reaching 285 – a drop of nearly 10 per cent compared to the previous year. The majority of persons employed on a full-time basis was classified as ‘other’ staff, which include clerks, cleaners, messengers and security personnel. Part-time employment in museums and historical sites also showed a decrease of 3 per cent, and numbered 98.

On the other hand, there was a 2 per cent increase in voluntary staff, amounting to 172. There was also a sharp increase among part-time and voluntary museum guides.

Total recurrent expenditure for active museums and historical sites in 2011 reached €12.2 million – an average of €179,642 per entity. There was an increase of 8 per cent in total expenditure compared to 2010 levels.

Fifty-five per cent of total expenditure was on staff costs, and 14 and 13 per cent was spent on administrative and sub-contracting expenses respectively. The total income for these organisations amounted to €13.1 million, an average of €192,169 per site. Admission fees continued to be the main source of reported income.

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