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Museum trust gives staff extra holiday in January to bolster health and wellbeing

York Museum Trust staff will have an extra week off in January to rest and recuperate from a busy year

York Museums Trust will close to the public and pause all activities behind the scenes for one week in early January 2022 in support of the health and wellbeing of its staff.

The charity, which operates museums such as York Art Gallery, York Castle and Yorkshire Museum, says that like many cultural institutions and charities, The Trust has had a challenging 18 months surviving the pandemic.

Extra responsibility

In the past two weeks the new Omicron variant has increased the severity of the risk to COVID-19 and has typified another year where staff have had the extra responsibility of managing and adapting to the pandemic for theirs and visitors’ safety.

The Trust has looked ahead and sees 2022 also being a challenge with the pandemic still with us and has therefore created an extra week after the holiday celebrations, which themselves can be busy periods, for staff to rest and recuperate.

It says January is normally a quiet time for the museums and the decision has been taken to close all sites completely for one week so that all staff, many of whom work rota patterns, can benefit from a complete break from work ahead of what is likely to be another busy and stressful year.”

Not affect annual leave

Reyahn King, chief executive of York Museums Trust said all staff will be off and not sending emails and the extra week off will not affect staff annual leave.

“We are most grateful for the continued support received from our visitors and supporters,” she said. “All our work to inspire, to care for and to share York’s wonderful art and heritage is dependent on our people who have gone the extra mile consistently throughout the pandemic. 

“Staff health and wellbeing is of utmost importance to York Museums Trust and all staff will be encouraged to take time to rest and recuperate. We hope people will return to work revitalised and ready to tackle the new year ahead.”

Staff will return to work as normal from Monday 10 January.

About the author – Adrian Murphy

Adrian is the Editor of MuseumNext and has 20 years’ experience as a journalist, half of which has been writing for the cultural sector.

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