Site in Tin Shui Wai set to store artefacts

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 September, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 30 September, 2009, 12:00am

The city's museums have received so many artefacts that the government has identified a site in Tin Shui Wai to build a central repository to address the shortage of storage space.

The plan is part of improved measures to be reported to the Legislative Council next month. It comes after 21 items for the Dr Sun Yat-sen Museum went missing four years after a curator collected more than 2,700 artefacts from Los Angeles in 2001. The incident was only revealed last month. The Leisure and Cultural Services Department did not disclose the exact location of the repository. But it said collections at museums had risen from about 240,000 in 2000 to 1,200,000.

The department has proposed a site of 5,000 square metres.

Other measures introduced include requiring museums to submit monthly reports on all new acquisitions and speeding up the registration process to cover the backlog stored in three museums.

The department said the Film Archive had only registered 64 per cent of its backlog as of September 1, while the Heritage Museum had registered 87 per cent. The Museum of History had been the quickest so far, with 99.7 per cent of its items registered. The department said the entire backlog at the three museums would be cleared next year.

The Independent Commission Against Corruption and the police crime prevention bureau have been invited to review procedures for acquiring and storing collections.

While attention focused on provision of quality services to meet increasing public expectations, the care of museum collections as a fundamental professional responsibility should not be neglected, the department said.

It added that the curator involved in the Sun Yat-sen incident had acted faithfully for the benefit of the museum, but staff had been too eager to complete the assignment and overlooked the importance of proper documentation and cross-checking.


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