§ 8. Shona McIsaac (Cleethorpes)
What her response is to the findings of the regional museums and galleries taskforce. 
§ The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (Tessa Jowell)
I welcome the publication of the report of the regional museums taskforce, which contains a convincing analysis of the problems and opportunities of museums and galleries in the regions. I have asked Lord Evans of Temple Guiting for advice, by the end of the year, on ways in which Resource should begin to implement the report's recommendations on the basis of funds already allocated to it for supporting regional activities.
§ Shona McIsaac
I thank my right hon. Friend for that reply. Has it been brought to her attention that the award-winning national fishing heritage centre in Grimsby closed its doors last week for six months because of funding difficulties? I heard the glimmers of hope that she gave in her reply, but that excellent regional museum needs help sooner rather than later.
§ Tessa Jowell
I thank my hon. Friend for her question. It is important to recognise that 2,000 museums and galleries throughout the country are funded in large part by local authorities and in much smaller part by my Department. Lord Evans's report proposes a new relationship between regional centres of excellence and smaller, satellite museums in order to improve their 14 contribution to education, access and social inclusion. I am sure that she will take those messages to her local museum in Cleethorpes.
§ Simon Hughes (Southwark, North and Bermondsey)
Will the Secretary of State consider museums that although are not in the national top 12, for which her Department has done a much appreciated deal allowing them some support in return for free admission, are none the less national museums in the first or second division rather than the premiership? In the borough for which she and I share responsibility there is the Design museum, which is unique in the United Kingdom. Is she willing to accept representations on ways in which that tier of national museum could be assisted if it, too, were willing to take the same approach to admission fees?
§ Tessa Jowell
I recognise the contribution that the Design museum makes to the life not just of Southwark but of London as a whole. However, I would not want to mislead the House by pretending that we are in a position to provide the necessary support to all museums and galleries to enable free entry, as is the case with those that my Department supports directly. At the beginning of next month, we shall see the completion of the programme that was introduced by my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for Islington, South and Finsbury (Mr. Smith). I hope that Members on both sides of the House will continue to make representations about the case for improving access to less recognised museums, which are often the focus of local communities and represent their own kind of excellence.
§ Jim Dobbin (Heywood and Middleton)
The Commonwealth games will be an important event for my constituency in Greater Manchester. Will the Minister encourage Commonwealth countries to maximise their participation by reassuring them of the safety aspects of the games?
§ Mr. Speaker
Order. The question was not about the Commonwealth games but about museums, so the Minister need not answer.