St Bride restructures library and workshop format

St Bride Foundation has restructured its library and printing workshop in response to funding constraints, but chief executive Glyn Farrow has stressed that the move is simply to ensure the long-term future of the Foundation.

As a result of the restructure, the two staff who worked in the library and workshop have been made redundant from the Foundation’s roster of 10 full-time employees.

“The current model for the library and printing workshop was simply unsustainable and had been costing us a huge amount of money for many years and we’ve just had to restructure them and will start running them in a different way. So we can only take on activities that can cover their costs,” said Farrow.

“The last thing I wanted to do was make two, loyal, lovely employees redundant, but we just couldn’t afford to have two full-time employees running those [the library and workshop].”

In due course the library and workshop will be run by sessional staff, based on the requirements and funding of individual projects, and all access will have to be pre-booked and be dependent on staffing availability.

The Shepherd’s at St Bride’s courses and the Foundation’s series of lectures are unaffected as are the Bridewell Theatre and Bridewell Bar and the venue hire of St Bride’s facilities.

Farrow said that the Foundation also remained committed to keeping its “collection, care and conservation” programme running.

He stressed that while the funding of the library and workshop had been an issue, the future of the Foundation was secure.

“All we are doing is making sure that we don’t eat into the reserves of the whole charity, it’s simply a preventative measure to ensure that the charity is sustainable,” said Farrow.

He added that while the future of the Foundation “was never in doubt”, he was keen for more industry involvement and was looking to secure more Print Heritage Partners to enable it to run more courses and projects.