Record museum visitors and fundraising for DCMS museums 4 Mar 2015

DCMS has announced that 49 million visits were made to the 16 museums and galleries directly sponsored by the department last year.  This is a 4% increase on the 47 million visitors during 2012/13 and the highest figure since records began in 2002.  Other findings include:

  • 20 million, or 42% of the total, were visits from overseas.  This is a decrease of one million compared to overseas visits in 2012/13.  The museums with the largest number of overseas visitors were Royal Armouries (68%), National Gallery (61%) and the British Museum (58%)
  • There were 120 million unique visits to the websites of the DCMS sponsored museums
  • 9 million visits were by children aged under 15, an increase of 3% since 2012/13
  • Admissions charges for paid-for exhibitions increased from £31.2m to £36.7m in the last year, a 17.7% increase
  • Trading income increased by 12% from £63.9m to £71.6m
  • The sixteen museums received charitable giving of £252.4m in 2013/14, a 60% increase on the year before.  Funds received by IWM were almost six times greater than the year before.

Culture Secretary Sajid Javid said “these new figures highlight once again the public’s appetite for UK’s incredible culture and heritage, and the continuing appeal of our world-class museums and galleries.  The Government’s investment to guarantee free admission for the national collections, along with stunning exhibitions and permanent collections, means that our great cultural institutes can be enjoyed by all.” Meanwhile Arts Professional debates whether free museum admission for overseas tourists encourages them to come to an otherwise expensive city, or whether Deputy Mayor for Education and Culture Munira Mirza is correct is seeing this demographic as ‘not as price sensitive’. (headlines), (report and detail), Arts Professional