The launch of V&A Dundee faces being stripped back unless there is more certainty over funding, according to a leaked document.
Bosses have been forced to seek help from the Scottish Government as accountants warn that activities at the iconic venue will have to be reduced without a “funding solution for the short-term need”.
The papers presented to the museum’s board also reveal the museum opened a £500,000 overdraft from a Swedish bank ahead of the September 15 opening.
The board resorted to that in the months before the scheduled launch, but the V&A insisted it is “normal practice” for these sorts of projects.
The confidential document from May 9 said: “It is vital that the discussions with the Scottish Government are concluded as soon as practical.
“Unless there is certainty over funding, decisions around the operational delivery will be affected and the board will need to urgently consider what activities could be cancelled.
“This will affect the scale of the opening programme and potentially increase the risk around successful delivery of the museum.”
The board papers added: “Without a funding solution for the short-term need, the adjusted business plan is not deliverable.
“Financial sustainability remains the key risk to the successful launch and opening of the museum.”
The project by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma was originally budgeted at £45 million, but that nearly doubled to £80m in 2015.
Labour MSP Jenny Marra, who was passed the documents, called on the First Minister to secure the museum’s financial position.
She told the Daily Record: “Everyone in Dundee wants the V&A to be a success. The First Minister owes it to the people of Dundee to step in and sort this out so we can enjoy the opening celebrations with confidence for the future.”
A spokesman for the V&A Dundee said the overdraft is “normal practice for start-up organisations”.
“We recently developed our business plan to better reflect the ambitions of V&A Dundee and make the most of launching the new museum, a huge moment for Dundee and Scotland,” he said.
“As part of this process, we thoroughly assessed and scrutinised any and all potential risks.
“Thanks to the long-term support of our founding partners, private supporters and others, we are in a strong position to launch and run the new museum.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “It is vital that the discussions with the Scottish Government are concluded as soon as practical.
“Unless there is certainty over funding, decisions around the operational delivery will be affected and the board will need to urgently consider what activities could be cancelled.”