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To: Diane Lees (Director of IWM), HRH The Duke of Kent (President) & Air Chief Marshal Sir Stuart Peach (Chairman)

End privatisation at the Imperial War Museum

End privatisation at the Imperial War Museum

Privatisation does not work: the failed privatisation at the Imperial War Museum is proof. It does not work for the public, nor for workers nor for museum collections. It is time to end privatisation and bring back services into house.

We are asking you:
- to immediately intervene to stop job cuts planned by private contractor Noonan
- put an end to the exploitative practice of Zero Hours Contracts
- ensure all staff are paid at least the London Living Wage
- Start the process of bringing back those services in-house

Why is this important?

In 2014, the Imperial War Museum privatised its visitor & security services. the company they appointed (Shields Guarding) had no experience in running museums and the results have been catastrophic impacting on workers, the services delivered to visitors and the care of collections.

Workers have endured two years of mismanagement, as well as payroll and pension administration problems. The original contractor, Shield Guarding, has now gone bust and has been taken over by multinational Noonans. They also have no experience in managing museums and are focusing on cutting jobs for profit rather than improving services. Workers & the PCS Union have raised numerous Health & Safety concerns that go ignored. It is now an urgent for the Imperial War Museum to end privatisation.

PCS members have raised alarming concerns about security and safety arrangements at the museum as a result of cost-cutting and the potential for a major incident to take place.

The PCS culture group supports the call for a review of privatisations in the sector and for these contracts, like at the National Gallery, the British Museum or Tate, to be brought back in-house.

How it will be delivered

We will hand deliver the petition to the Imperial War Museum during 2017

Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, London

Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL

Reasons for signing

  • I signed because recently I revisited the IWM and to say I was disappointed is an understatement. It's a shadow of its former self. Superficial, sparse and poorly laid out. Most of the exhibits have simply disappeared. I did not realise that the museum had been privatised and now wondering if the artefacts might have been sold off!!
  • How can it be cost effective to privatise such services ?, a privatised service has to be managed by the contractor, have a profit taken by the contractor and needs to be supervised / monitored by the hiring organization. Where are the savings coming from ? presumably from reduced service and exploitation of the work force.
  • National Treasures should not be taken for granted, the IWM is an invaluable resource and educational institution for understanding why our country is the way it is today and the sacrifices made to bring that about.


2016-10-20 18:05:20 +0100

1,000 signatures reached

2016-09-20 10:42:40 +0100

500 signatures reached

2016-09-19 15:50:41 +0100

100 signatures reached

2016-09-19 14:06:48 +0100

50 signatures reached

2016-09-19 13:22:13 +0100

25 signatures reached

2016-09-19 13:07:07 +0100

10 signatures reached