WORKERS at the Science Museum's National Collections Centre in Wroughton could go on strike over pay.

The Prospect union, which is balloting workers at Science Museum sites across the country over strike action, say workers have seen a 13 per cent real terms fall in wages since 2013. Wages have increased by 1.5 per cent this year.

Union chiefs claim that senior managers have seen their salaries increase by 5.5 per cent per year between 2014 and 2018, but the average full time salary for staff grew by 1.6 per cent a year.

Sharon Brown, Prospect's negotiations officer, said: “Our members in the Science Museum Group love what they do but the cannot carry on with year after year of real terms pay cuts. How can they be expected to provide stability for their families under these conditions? The Science Museum is one of the top tourist attractions in the country - people will be astonished at how poorly its staff are paid."

“For years our members’ pay has risen by less than inflation and the imposition this year of yet another below inflation, 1.5% pay rise is especially galling when the director has seen his pay increase by a third in just four years.

“At the bottom of the pay scale workers are unacceptably still earning well below the Real Living Wage. Following union pressure other museum groups have committed to become Real Living Wage employers, it’s about time SMG did the same.”

Ballots close on July 1.

A Science Museum spokeswoman said: “We made a pay offer that we believe is reasonable and affordable given the challenging overall financial picture, which included additional increases for the lowest paid roles. 

"In light of the positive steps we have taken, we are disappointed that Prospect Union have decided to ballot their members for industrial action.”