asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, under the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum Acts of 1958 and 1967, what status is accorded to recorded minutes of broad decisions; whether the authority of the Director of the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum over-rides that of the Board of Trustees; and whether Civil Service conditions are adhered to in staff appointments and gradings in the museum.
The minutes of the board record the decisions of the museum's trustees and are the instrument through which they discharge their statutory duty to administer and run the institution. The authority of the director does not override that of the board of trustees.Civil Service national museum grades apply to professional and supervisory staff. Other staff are generally graded in accordance with Northern Ireland Civil Service grades. The Northern Ireland Civil Service terms and conditions of employment are applied to all staff.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many professional staff have been appointed to the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum since 1967; to what areas of work these professional staff have been allocated: what means are used to inform staff of matters affecting them professionally; and whether posts of deputy director and administrator have been established in the museum.
Twenty professional staff have been appointed since 1967. They were appointed to particular areas of work as follows:
- One to Department of Buildings
- Three to Department of Non-Material Culture
- One to Library/Archives
- Two to Education Office
- Four to Department of Transport
- Nine to Department of Material Culture
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what provisions are made for storage and restoration of specimens in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.
Storage space totalling about 2,000 square metres is provided by various units in the museum which include a controlled environment store. A workshop area of almost 1,000 square metres is available for restoration purposes.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland who prepares initial project briefs in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum; and what are their specialist qualifications for such work.
Projects relating to the museum's development plan are prepared by professional and administrative staff. Initial briefs for projects of a curatorial or research nature are prepared by the appropriate professional staff. Where specialist qualifications are required they are those appropriate to the post held by the person engaged in the preparation of the initial brief.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland who has responsibility for the use and allocation of service equipment in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.
Responsibility is delegated to appropriate levels of administrative or professional staff depending upon the type of equipment and the use to which it is to be put.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what procedures are followed regarding tenders and contracts in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.
Tenders are invited and contracts placed in the same way as is usual in the public sector in Northern Ireland. For specialised works tenders are invited from lists of contractors who have responded to public advertisements covering these areas of work. The Department of Education approves all tenders before they are accepted.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether professional staff have access to trustee meetings in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.
The director attends the meeting of the board of trustees and the trustees may invite other professional staff to be present as appropriate.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what proposals there are to abolish the trustees of the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.