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Last Updated: Monday, 20 March 2006, 17:00 GMT
Alarm sounded over museum future
John Paul Jones Museum - Courtesy Dumfries Museums
Trustees fear the John Paul Jones Museum could close
The future of a museum dedicated to the US naval hero John Paul Jones is in jeopardy due to a lack of funds.

The cottage birthplace of the Solway sailor at Arbigland, near Kirkbean, is operated by a group of trustees and attracts about 3,000 visitors a year.

The trust's chairman has warned that it could close if extra resources for the museum could not be found.

Jones played a key part in the US War of Independence and was regarded as the "father of the US Navy".

Trust chairman Alf Hannay fears that failure to increase funding to the museum could lead to its slow decline.

We will find that the numbers will fall and we will close by stealth rather than by lack of funding
Alf Hannay
Trust chairman

"At this point in time we have 3,000 in the bank and we have still got bills to pay, which will really wipe out that funding," he said.

Mr Hannay said that funding levels had not increased since 2000 and he was concerned that visitor levels would tail off.

"We will find that the numbers will fall and we will close by stealth rather than by lack of funding," he said.

He added that he hoped the local area committee could exert pressure to ensure that more funding could be found.


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