Monday, October 18, 1999 Published at 17:17 GMT 18:17 UK
Debts rock pop museum
The National Centre for Popular Music cannot pay its debts
The £15m National Centre for Popular Music has engaged the services of insolvency experts to help save the cash-strapped attraction just seven months after it opened.
Only 104,000 have passed through the centre's doors since it was unveiled to mixed reviews in March.
The companies behind the centre, Music Heritage Ltd and Music Heritage Enterprises Ltd, have handed over its running to insolvency practitioners PricewaterhouseCoopers.
The attraction will stay open as usual, while creditors consider a compromise proposal to ease the financial crisis and give the centre a fresh start.
If an agreement is not reached at a meeting scheduled for 2 November, the business will be forced into liquidation.
The centre's disappointing visitor figures have already seen 16 of its 79 jobs axed, with a new director brought in last month to improve attendance.
Although the museum's strikingly futuristic exterior - designed by architect Nigel Coates - won acclaim, critics were less unimpressed by its contents.
The centre's 'hands-on' approach, which encourages visitors to pick up instruments or make their own pop videos, was said to be 'limited'.
The lack of rock memorabilia was also a source of disappointment.
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