Aug 26 2009 By Fraser Wilson
ALMOST half the staff at Scotland's centre for architecture and design, The Lighthouse in Glasgow city centre, have been made redundant after it entered administration.
In total 24 people lost their jobs with immediate effect after the Lighthouse Trust's board decided to wind the centre up following difficulties in resolving long-standing budget problems.
The centre, which was opened by the Queen in 1999, had employed 57 staff.
Bruce Cartwright, from administrators PricewaterhouseCoopers, said the redundancies were required to give the centre the best "opportunity to survive".
He said: "We are in agreement with the management team that there is an immediate requirement to reduce the overhead costs.
"As a result, and with deep regret, we have concluded that in this climate the organisation is unable to sustain the current level of employees.
"Clearly it is disappointing to have to make redundancies and our team will be doing all we can to help these employees at this difficult time.
"We are convinced that this action was necessary in order to give the organisation the opportunity to survive."
Based in the famous Charles Rennie-Mackintosh-designed building on Mitchell Lane in the heart of the city centre, The Lighthouse championed Scotland's architecture and design both nationally and internationally.
Its six floors offered a variety of exhibition space, educational workshops, a shop and cafe.
However, the combined effects of the recession and budget deficits had hit the Lighthouse board hard in the last year.
Eleanor McAllister OBE, chairwoman of the board of The Lighthouse Trust, said: "We know the devastating effect this will have on our staff and on the partners working with us on our projects.
"We have done everything possible to avoid this, but the options before us were very limited in the current economic downturn."