I am not really a modern art lover, so when I attended the Hepworth I am sorry to say I only saw stones with holes, doodles on canvas and a further array of stuff that I would expect to find in a skip.
I do appreciate that more educated and enlightened see great works of art and can spend hours enjoying the exhibits.
Having looked on Google the electorate of Wakefield district numbers around 250,000, therefore if the future cost requirement is £6m, that represents a cost to each person in the Wakefield area of £24.
I wonder how much of the £6m would be raised if Wakefield Council asked our citizens to make a donation?
Wakefield Council has therefore made the decision on our behalf to spend our money on what it believes to be in our interest, which is what we elect them to do.
Given the fact that our council has many other pressing demands with a limited budget and given the cutbacks in many essential areas of the council, we must ask,” is it justifiable”?
I note that back in April our council tax was increased by 1.99% which for a band D property is about £25.
I am sure most families, especially in this time of cost of living crisis, that the £25 could have possibly been better spent by families to try and balance our already stretched personal budgets.
It is also interesting to note that over the past three years it is estimated that over a million people entered the gallery.
Simple maths suggests that if each of those had been charged just £6 each the council would not need to be spending any further council tax money.
So is it worth a £6 entrance fee?
By forcing the citizens of Wakefield to pay for all visitors’ entrance fees through our council tax we will never know.
We, however, do not get the option of asking for our £24 back, so I really hope that the calculations being used to predict the future numbers and how much these people will spend in our city are accurate, or should I say more accurate than the calculations they used when building our new market.