National Assembly for Wales Public Accounts Committee

Scrutiny of Accounts 2014-15 

February 2016


Amgueddfa Cymru’s response to the Recommendations

Amgueddfa Cymru

Comment / Response

Updated Comment/ Response August 2018


Recommendation 6. The Committee notes that the National Museum’s financial report includes seven high level indicators relating to a key objective from the Museum’s “Vision Map”. However, we are concerned that some of the performance targets are not sufficiently challenging particularly where targets have been lowered from last year. (Page 35)



Amgueddfa Cymru has a new 10 year Vision which includes strategic commitments and objectives.  As part of producing Strategic and Operational Plans for 2016-17, targets will be reviewed  and discussed with MALD our sponsor


Our targets for 2017/18 and 2018/19 reflected the committee’s comments. All targets are challenging, and we are structuring and prioritising our work accordingly to strive to achieve them. This included reviewing our strategic commitments and objectives further.


Recommendation 7. Although we note the changes faced by the National Museum, and the impact these have had on performance, we recommend that the National Museum review these targets next year and set aspirational targets that are more challenging in order to drive forward improvement and change. (Page 35)



Amgueddfa Cymru is reviewing targets for 2016-17, with view to setting more challenging targets, as part of Operational Planning process.






More challenging targets were set as part of the Operational Planning process for both 2017/18 and 2018/19. We have initiated and begun discussions with WG regarding how targets are set going forward to better capture the impact of Amgueddfa Cymru’s work, in line with the Future Generations Act. Whilst targets such as visitor figures illustrate how successful free entry has been in attracting more visitors, they do not reflect the experience of visitors or those who engage with our work.


Recommendation 8. The Committee acknowledges that consideration is being given by the National Museum to charging for specific services but we believe that any charges must not impact of this on the Welsh Government’s policy on free admission to Museums in Wales. We accept and fully endorse the reassurances provided to us by witnesses that the National Museum will maintain its commitment to inclusion and diversity. We recommend that revenue should not replace income the Museum might lose in the form of grant aid from the Welsh Government and that there should be transparency regarding how it is used by the Museum. (Page 36)



Amgueddfa Cymru remains fully committed to free admissions to our museums, and our commitment to inclusion and diversity.


Amgueddfa Cymru is actively exploring opportunities. Plans are in place to increase income generation through investment funding from an Invest to Save application.


Amgueddfa Cymru has taken into account all revenue streams when setting budgets following requirements of Managing Welsh Public Money




We remain fully committed to free admission, and our commitment to inclusion and diversity both in terms of visitors, our workforce, volunteers and those we engage with through our work.


Income generation activities have significantly increased and there have been some notable successes including the opening of the High Ropes course at St Fagans National Museum of History. We have also introduced some charging elements for learning and some special exhibitions.


As per recommended in the Thurley review of Amgueddfa Cymru, we are seeking approval to appoint a Commerical Director in the near future.




Recommendation 9. The Committee notes the National Museum’s pension and severance scheme appears to be an outlier in relation to other Welsh public sector organisations. Setting this against the current pay dispute with the Museums lowest paid staff, the Committee are concerned about the negative impact this has had on the public’s perception of the National Museum particularly in light of recent pay outs to the Museum’s senior staff while there appear to be cuts in pay to the Museum’s lowest paid staff. We acknowledge the work being undertaken by the National Museum to resolve disputes over pay and to improve equal pay across the organisation. (Page 36)



Amgueddfa Cymru with agreement of Pension Trustees has taken action and agreed to reduce the cost of severance.


 A new Severance Scheme has been developed. It has been agreed by Prospect Union, and discussions continue with PCS union with view to Making changes to the scheme.


New Pension Scheme agreed by Trade Unions put in place.


Pension Scheme strain costs are no longer payable as part of the severance scheme.


Implemented the same 2.25% pay rise as WG.


Recommendation 10. The Committee are concerned about some of the issues raised in the National Museum’s staff survey particularly in terms of bullying and harassment and the overall low level of staff morale. However, the Committee welcomes the work being undertaken by the Museum’s senior management team to address these concerns and the seriousness with which these matters are being addressed. The Committee recommends that the Museum continue with this work and undertake a further staff survey at an appropriate time to assess whether the actions being taken are leading to improvement and to identify areas if and where further improvement is required. (Page 36)



Amgueddfa Cymru will continue its work to address the findings of the staff survey. The full staff survey along with a detailed action plan was published to all staff. Implementation will be monitored by Senior Management Team, Staff Forum and Performance Review Committee on behalf of the Board.


A further staff survey will be undertaken in 2017.


Amgueddfa Cymru is working towards IIP40 across all sites with staff and Trade Unions.


This replaced staff survey for 2017.