More Local Authority Museums Revert to Trust Status

Category: Castleacre News

May 09

Robust Indemnity An Essential Requirement For Trustees

The Museums Association have reported that government funding cuts are leading to more local government museums opting for trust status. Geraldine Kendall, writing in the May edition of the Museum’s Journal says ‘Trust status has come to represent a lifeline for struggling museums…’, she argues that there are ‘many intangible benefits to being in a trust: less bureacracy;greater scope for entrepreneurialism and flexibility; and the freedom to make quicker decisions…’ But trust status brings serious additional personal responsibilities for trustees particularly in terms of potential liabilities.

Hugo Johnsen, Museum Director, Castleacre Insurance says ‘there is no doubt that converting to a trust can inject new vitality into collection management  and in most cases can deliver cost savings, but many trustees are not aware, particularly if they have served on a local government board, that trust status means individual trustees become personally liable with unlimited liability for any misdeeds undertaken either as an individual or collectively. Fortunately this can be mitigated for no much cost with a Trustee Liability Insurance policy.’