City &County of Swansea - 2016 Budget Reduction Outcome
Firstly the Society wishes to thank all of you who registered your objections to the proposed reductions in service by the WGAS delivered at the NMI. It is with total dismay and disappointment that all of these protestations made through multiple channels were frustrated and the intention to reduce the service at Neath by 50% was accepted without amendment.
The implementation of the reduced service led to a surplus of one member of WGAS staff. Despite appeals and presentations of support we have been served with the additional displeasure of the departure of the archivist Michael Phelps. It is very difficult to understand why the WGAS is prepared to dispense with such an experienced professional with 24 years of service.
Michael Phelps’s knowledge and enthusiasm for his subject (and that of his research clients) and for Neath’s history and the Neath Antiquarian Society Archive is respected and appreciated by all of us who have worked with him and those who have known him over the past years of his work in Neath. His departure will be a great loss to the Archive Service and to Neath Antiquarian Society.
Commencing on the 1st August the service at Neath will reduce to two days, and it is likely that these will be with the NMI open to the general public on Monday and Tuesday. On a Monday there will be two WGAS staff to provide a Family History facility and access to the NAS archive. On a Tuesday there will be one member of WGAS staff to provide a Family History facility and one NAS volunteer who will provide access to the NAS archive.
The Society is keen to maintain access to its archive for academic scholars and others, especially when they have travelled from outside the area or abroad and, for whatever reason, are unable to visit the NMI on a Monday or Tuesday. Therefore, whilst Wednesday and Thursday are days that are closed to the general public the NAS archive may be accessed by making prior arrangements with the Society using the contact form on the NAS webpage.
Future intentions may also see these two days available for staging a variety of events.
Full confirmation of these arrangements will appear on this website shortly.