MeCCSA calls for public forum

MeCCSA has written to Amanda Nevill to ask for a public meeting on the crisis facing the BFI to be held as soon as possible. MeCCSA has offered to organise the event.

Amanda Nevill,
British Film Institute,
21 Stephen Street,
London W1T 1LN

13 June 2007

Dear Amanda Nevill,

MeCCSA is the representative body for university film and media scholars and teachers.

I write because we are concerned about the cumulative impact of the changes outlined in your open email of 30 May. As you are no doubt aware, there has been considerable concern expressed about developments separately concerning the library, the archive, education and publishing.

We are concerned that, taken together, these represent a major withdrawal of services and resources offered by the BFI to the research and teaching community.

Film and television scholars in the UK have a global reputation that is second to none. Our courses are highly sought after and recruit students from around the world. The BFI’s role as a provider of services has been crucial in establishing this reputation.

We are aware that some consultations have taken place about some of these developments. Others are new to us.

We are also aware that no opportunity has been offered for us to make effective representations to government and to the UK Film Council about the state of BFI financing and importance of these resources to film and television scholarship in the UK.

We therefore urgently request that a proper consultation takes place with the academic sector.

We further propose that this takes the form of a day event at which the current plight of the BFI is presented by senior staff to concerned academics, and is then debated both in plenary sessions and in specialist groups on particular issues.

Such is our concern about the developments announced in your letter that we are more than willing to organise this event and provide a venue for it.

Yours sincerely,

John Ellis
Vice-Chair for MeCCSA Executive

cc. Anthony Minghella, Roger Laughton

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