Tyne & Wear

Durham Light Infantry military museum to shut

DLI exhibit
Image caption Durham County Council said it would help find other jobs for staff

An award-winning museum dedicated to the Durham Light Infantry is to shut because it is too expensive to run, councillors said.

The DLI Museum in Durham could see its collection relocated to Spennymoor.

In a report for Durham County Council's cabinet, council officers said the building was too expensive to maintain and temporary exhibits would instead be held at Durham University.

Councillors have now voted to shut the museum.

But a spokesman said it was hopeful staff could be "relocated" in to other jobs.

The regiment which owns the memorabilia said it was sad but "optimistic for the future".

The DLI Museum opened in 1968 and has exhibits such as uniforms and firearms dating from 1758 to 2011.

Image copyright Google
Image caption The Durham Light Infantry Museum opened in 1968

Terry Collins, the council's neighbourhood services director, said the museum cost £397,000 to maintain last year which equated to £10 per visitor.

The average cost to the council for its other four museums was £1.60, he said.

The council would have to spend £251,000 to prepare the new storage space and £70,000 a year to maintain the collection but the authority would save £221,000 a year by closing the museum, Mr Collins said.

The museum has previously been awarded quality status by Visit Britain.

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