Arsonist fails to shut museum

An arson attack on a telephone pole has left Manchester Jewish Museum using Twitter and staff's personal mobile phones to tell visitors that it is open.

The vandalism, which happened last Wednesday, means that email and telephone communications are down until engineers can install a new pole next week. It comes during a period when 500 pupils are booked to visit the museum from nine schools as part of their religious education syllabus.

The Cheetham Hill museum launched its new website a month ago, but has been unable to update the site aside from a warning notice telling visitors about the communication difficulties.

Museum chief executive Max Dunbar said: "We are tweeting people and letting people know we are open. We are also using Facebook and our own mobile phones."

Mr Dunbar reported a 20 per cent rise in visitor numbers over the summer period compared with 2010, which saw a drop in visitors and financial turmoil which threatened the museum with closure.

    Last updated: 2:35pm, November 17 2011