Dr Tristram Hunt, currently Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent, will become the new Director of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The V&A is one of the world’s most important art and design museums.
Various UK papers and the V&A have announced the news on their websites. The papers concentrate on the political side of this latest resignation. This is not the first resignation and more are expected. This latest resignation triggers a second “perilous by-election”, while Labour is experiencing an all-time-low in polls. The news caused Nigel Farage, former Ukip leader and MEP, to boast on twitter “Labour is doomed”.
The V&A seems to be elated. On it website it point out “... A historian, politician, writer and broadcaster, Tristram is an expert on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with a particular focus on Victorian urban history. … Tristram’s support of the ceramics industry, together with the Art Fund, played an important role in saving the Wedgwood Collection in 2014. The collection was gifted to the V&A and is on long-term loan to the Wedgwood Museum in Barlaston, Stoke-on-Trent. … He brings widespread expertise across education, industry and politics to the V&A, and a keen awareness of the important role of major public institutions in the UK, having been at the forefront of political, cultural and public life for the last decade. …”
According to Rob Merrick of the Independent, Dr Hunt resigns immediately. The exact date Dr Hunt will start as V&A Director is not mentioned in the papers, nor on the V&A award-winning website.