Museum visitor numbers are up but it’s not all good news

The Teylers Museum in Haarlem Photo: Holland Media Bank
The Teylers Museum in Haarlem Photo: Holland Media Bank

Visits to museums in the Netherlands were up again in 2018 but it is not all good news, the museum association said in its annual report.

Some 32 million people visited a museum in the Netherlands in 2018, compared to 31 million in the year before. The rise is almost entirely due to foreign tourists and over half of visitors to the main museums in Amsterdam come from abroad

One third of visitors, some 1.4 million, have a museum card. They accounted for one million visits last year.

The association, which represents 425 Dutch museums, warned that while steady rise of museum visits – by 37% since 2013 – has increased employment, more staff are now occupied with commercial activities.

That will have consequences for the management of the collection, the association said, by putting more pressure on curators and researchers and limiting exchanges between museums.

Small museums are also in the danger zone because of local council cutbacks, the association said.

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