Theft of Medieval Coins From Scottish Museum Linked to Strikes

Police were called to the museum last week when the coins were reported missing. Photo: eif.co.uk
The theft took place at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh. Photo: subberculture via Flickr

The theft took place at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh.
Photo: subberculture via Flickr

Rare medieval coins were stolen from the National Museum of Scotland. The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union has blamed the theft on the management’s decision to outsource key jobs.

The coins—which date from 1555, 1601, and 1604—were stolen from the museum’s Kingdom of Scots gallery which contains some of the most valuable pieces in the collection.

The allegations come after it emerged that the theft may have taken place during a strike last month, when the museum was operating under a reduced capacity due to the staff walkout.

Police were called to the museum last week when the coins were reported missing. Photo: eif.co.uk

Police were called to the museum last week when the coins were reported missing.
Photo: eif.co.uk

“We have been made aware of the incident, which is extremely unfortunate,” a PCS spokesman told the Edinburgh Evening News. “There is some speculation that this may have happened during the recent strike. If this was the case then management have put these exhibits at risk by opening the museum with a skeleton staff.”

He added, “We would hope that management would get around the table to resolve this issue,” he said, in reference to the ongoing pay dispute.

However, a spokesperson for the NMS said there was adequate security in place to protect the museum. “We continue to provide appropriate levels of trained staff in our galleries.”

There have been suggestions that the theft took place during a strike last month. Photo: BBC

There have been suggestions that the theft took place during a strike last month.
Photo: BBC

The spokesperson insisted, “National Museums Scotland has a wide range of security arrangements in place which are regularly reviewed.”

The NMS described the cost of the stolen coins as “valuable,” without divulging an exact figure.

Related stories:

Scotland National Museums Staff Go on a Week-Long Strike

$300,000 Rodin Bust Stolen From Danish Museum in Broad Daylight

Thieves Steal 45 Historical Artifacts from Valencia Fine Art Museum


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