Funding comes from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport via the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA). The MLA’s funding is being reduced by more than 25%, and in consequence PAS funding has been frozen at the £1.3 million level, an effective cut allowing for inflation (it needs £1.49 million to maintain current activity).A petition to Number 10 that attracted just over 2000 "signatures" called for:
... the Prime Minister to Preserve and Invest in the Portable Antiquities Scheme.A response has been posted today:
So funding for PAS will be "maintained", i.e. frozen, at £1.3 million. Indeed, the response confirms an effective cut.
The Portable Antiquities Scheme is widely regarded as a success in encouraging people to voluntarily report finds of archaeological interest. In the 10 years since its inception the Portable Antiquities Scheme has recorded more than 317,000 archaeological finds on its online database (www.finds.org.uk), the largest online database of its kind anywhere in the world.
The Government is aware that a number of concerns have arisen in connection with the future funding of the scheme. The PAS is funded by the Museums Libraries and Archive Council, therefore decisions about the scheme's future funding will be taken by them. The Museums Libraries and Archive Council have confirmed that they will maintain funding for Portable Antiquities Scheme in the next financial year (£1.3 million).
The Museums Libraries and Archives Council recognises that the Portable Antiquities Scheme is of national importance. The Government shares the Museums Libraries and Archive Council's commitment to the scheme. The British Museum and the Museums Libraries and Archive Council are fully committed to the continued success of the Portable Antiquities Scheme and are working together with other stakeholders to ensure that this is achieved.
How does this "Preserve and Invest" in the Portable Antiquities Scheme?