April 2023

NMDC Newsletter April 2023
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  NMDC Newsletter April 2023
  In this month's edition:  
  National Portrait Gallery shares Mai (Omai) portrait with Getty Museum

Museums and Galleries Tax Relief extended in the Spring Budget

Energy Bills Discount Scheme

Cultural Investment Fund beneficiaries announced

Heritage Fund extends deadline for Dynamic Collections Campaign

ALVA – Attraction visits for 2022: visitor numbers increase but Covid and cost-of-living crisis have an impact – NHM still the most visited museum

The Impact of Arts and Cultural Engagement on Population Health – UCL

PEC Good Work Review explores job quality in the creative industries

Phase 4 Low Carbon Skills Fund announced

Inclusive Cultures leadership programme from Clore Leadership

Curating for Change launches recruitment action plan

M+H announces Awards shortlist

Family Friendly Museum Award 2023
  Section headings:  
  NMDC news   |  Members’ news  |  Budget  |  Government funding  |  Visitor and income statistics   |  Brexit impact  |  Health and wellbeing  |  Data  |  Education and employment in the creative sector  |  Environment and sustainability  |  Accessibility and Inclusion  |  Marketing  |  Volunteering  |  Events  |  Awards  |  Appointments and resignations  |  Catch up  |  In the news  |  Jobs  
sausage dog sitting on its hind legs
David Hockney, Dog Painting 41, 1995 © David Hockney. Photo Credit_ Richard Schmidt Collection The David Hockney Foundation
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  NMDC news   
  NMDC Spoliation Working Group - training  
A one day training session on 27 April, organised by NMDC Spoliation Working Group, will support museum professionals interested in researching the Nazi-era provenance of collections (or potential new acquisitions and incoming loans). Open to anyone working at collections based institutions. The training is in-person at the V&A, London. There are a small number of places left for this free training on a first come, first served basis. Eventbrite
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  More tickets released for sold out ICOM UK conference  
In response to demand additional tickets have been released for the ICOM UK 2023 conference taking place in Glasgow on 17 and 18 April. The conference, entitled 'Addressing legacies of colonialism nationally and internationally', will explore questions around reparations, climate justice, restitution and education, what these topics mean to museums, and how can we meaningfully grapple with them.
The conference is a collaboration between ICOM UK, NMDC and Glasgow Life, with support from Museums Galleries Scotland and Barker Langham. Discounted tickets are available for members of NMDC, ICOM UK and Glasgow Life at £70 including lunch and networking opportunities. Institutional tickets are also available along with discounted student tickets. The deadline for booking tickets is 12.00 on Friday 7 April. Eventbrite
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  Members’ news  
  National Portrait Gallery shares Mai (Omai) portrait with Getty Museum  
Following the Government’s export ban extension till 10 June, it was announced on 31 March that Joshua Reynold’s Portrait of Mai (Omai) will be shared by the National Portrait Gallery and Getty in a new model of international collaboration. The National Portrait Gallery and the Los Angeles-based Getty Museum intend to enter a joint ownership agreement, to share the work for public exhibition, research and conservation care. The public will be able to view the work free of charge. Nicholas Cullinan, Director of the NPG, said: “We are delighted to announce an innovative and exciting strategic partnership with Getty to hopefully become co-owners of Sir Joshua Reynolds’ majestic Portrait of Mai (Omai) and a joint endeavour to advance scholarship and understanding of the fascinating and complex themes the work embodies.” Lord Parkinson, Arts and Heritage Minister, said: “I am absolutely delighted that, thanks to the export bar process, the National Portrait Gallery and Getty are closing in on finalising a deal so this exceptional painting will be able to be viewed by members of the public from across the UK, and across the globe. Katherine E. Fleming, CEO of J. Paul Getty Trust, said: “Getty, which strives to identify new models for thinking about and sharing cultural heritage, is delighted by this opportunity to participate in an innovative approach to ownership – one that maximizes accessibility and viewability while placing Portrait of Mai in a rich and multi-faceted transatlantic context.” NPG, Economist, M+H Advisor
Also: NPG announces new commission to double the number of women on the walls of its post-1900 galleries for re-opening in June. NPG
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  National Science and Media Museum receives National Lottery Heritage Fund grant  
A £3.08m grant has been awarded to the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford for the delivery phase of their Sound and Vision Project. The project will futureproof the museum creating two new galleries and an additional passenger lift. To facilitate the capital works the museum will be closed from June 2023 to summer 2024. National Science and Media Museum
Also: Heritage Fund awards £24m to projects across the UK. HLF
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  National Gallery 12 partner venues announced for ‘National Treasure’ loans  
As part of their Bicentenary celebrations the National Gallery has announced the 12 partner venues that will be hosting paintings loaned by the Gallery as part of their ‘National Treasure’ programme. All opening on 10 May 2024, the 200th birthday of the National Gallery, partner venues will curate exhibitions, events and digital interventions to showcase their works. The displays will mean around 35 million people, more than half the UK population will be within an hour’s journey of a National Gallery masterpiece. Host venues include – Ashmolean Museum, Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, The Fitzwilliam Museum, Ikon Gallery, Laing Art Gallery, Leicester Museum and Art Gallery, The National Library of Wales, The Scottish National Gallery, Ulster Museum, Walker Art Gallery and York Art Gallery. National Gallery
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  Art Explora ‘Mobile Museum’ from Tate goes on the road  
Tate is touring works from the national collection for the first time in a partnership with French organisation Art Explora. For 10 weeks the ‘Mobile Museum’ attached to a cargo lorry will tour works across the 5 boroughs in the Liverpool City region. The exhibition contains a selection of works from the ‘Radical Landscapes’ exhibition first shown at Tate Liverpool in Summer 2022. Helen Legg, Director of Tate Liverpool, said: “The mobile museum is unique. It goes directly into communities. It allows us, as a museum, to meet people on their own terms.” The project will act as a pilot scheme for further participatory projects. Art Explora, Art Newspaper
Also: El Anatsui, the Ghanaian born, Nigeria based artist has been named as the next Hyundai Commission at the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. Best known for his use of recycled bottle tops, Anatsui will be creating a site specific installation which will open to the public from 10 October 2023 – 14 April 2024. Tate, Art Newspaper
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  Walker Art Gallery to re-open gallery spaces after 3 year closure  
90 years after they first opened, and 3 years after closure, ‘Renaissance Rediscovered’ comprises around 200 paintings including newly acquired masterpieces. The galleries will also represent fresh interpretation and research showcasing underrepresented voices. Walker Art Gallery
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  RAMM wins accessible and inclusive tourism award  
RAMM won Gold at the 13th Devon Tourism Awards in recognition of providing a truly memorable visitor experience for everyone, particularly those with accessibility requirements, and demonstrating excellence across every aspect. Helen Hartstein, Audience Development Lead, said: “ Since the museum’s redevelopment in 2012 a great deal of thought has gone into the layout of the galleries, and our teams have created fantastic accessible resources and an abundance of online content to ensure the museum can be explored from home.” RAMM
two dogs, one resting is head on his paws by a bone
Edwin Landseer, Doubtful Crumbs, 1858-1859 © The Trustees of The Wallace Collection
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  Images this month: The Wallace Collection  
This month our images come from the new exhibition at the Wallace Collection - 'Portrait of Dogs: From Gainsborough to Hockney' which opened on 29 March. Featuring over 50 works, the exhibition explores the unique bond between humans and their canine companions and runs till 15 October 2023. Wallace Collection, Telegraph
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  Museums and Galleries Tax Relief extended in the Spring Budget  
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt delivered his first Budget statement on 15 March, with headline coverage of extensions to free childcare and scrapping the limit on tax-free pensions savings.
The big announcement for museums was the extension of the current higher rate of Museums & Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief (MGETR), as well as extension of the sunset clause on the Relief. This means from 1 April 2023, the 45% (for non-touring productions) and 50% (for touring productions) rates of MGETR will be extended for 2 years. The rates will taper to 30%/35% on 1 April 2025 and return to 20%/25% on 31 March 2026. Hunt, said:“… because our theatres, orchestras and museums do such a brilliant job at attracting tourists to London and the UK, I will also extend for another two years their current 45% and 50% reliefs.” 
In response to the news NMDC Chair Maria Balshaw said: “We are delighted that the Museums and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief has been extended and the higher rates will be maintained until 2026. The Relief has been a vital source of support for museums and galleries, and today’s announcement is a very welcome recognition by Government of the importance of our sector. The extension of the higher rates will enable museums to undertake even more ambitious and innovative work to engage and inspire audiences around the UK.” Whilst the sector welcomes the decision to extend the tax relief, it is noted that the sunset clause has not been completely removed. Museums are also seeking clarification on the changes to 'qualifying expenditure on goods and services that are used or consumed in the UK’, which suggests potential impacts on claiming for international touring. 
Other items in the Budget of relevance to the cultural sector include:
Levelling up:
  • Refocused Investment Zones programme to catalyse 12 high-potential knowledge-intensive growth clusters across the UK. Each cluster will drive the growth of at least one of the key future sectors - green industries, digital technologies, life sciences, creative industries and advanced manufacturing.
  • Each English Investment Zone will have access to interventions worth £80m over 5 years.
Local leadership:
  • The function of Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to be delivered by local government in the future. There will be a consultation process on removing central government support for LEPs from April 2024, with next steps confirmed by summer 2023.
  • £400m to new Levelling Up Partnerships to provide bespoke place-based regeneration in 20 of England’s areas over 2023 and 2024-25.
  • A third round of the Levelling Up Fund will proceed in 2023 with a further £1b.
  • Extension of the Energy Bills Discount Scheme until 31 March 2024.
  • VAT relief for energy saving materials. The government has published a call for evidence on options to reform VAT relief for the installation of energy saving materials in the UK. It will include considering the inclusion of additional technologies and extension of relief to buildings used solely for a relevant charitable purpose.
  • Over £100m for support of local charities and community organisations. Targeted towards organisations most at risk, due to increased demand from vulnerable groups and higher delivery costs, as well as providing investment in energy efficiency measures to reduce future operating costs.
The Budget also remodelled screen sector Tax Reliefs as Expenditure Credits relating to film, high end TV, animation, children’s television and video games. Ben Roberts, Chief Executive of the BFI said: “We welcome the Chancellor’s news today of the reformed Expenditure Credits across our screen industries, a testament to how crucial they are to the UK’s economy and growth. The news today will ensure the UK remains a truly globally competitive production hub…I am particularly heartened to see a much needed boost for children’s television and animation as two areas of cultural and societal importance in which the UK excels creatively, but that still have significant growth potential.” Gov.uk (Budget overview), Gov.uk (Extension to MEGTR), Gov.uk (all Budget documents), M+H, Museums Journal, FT (including quote from Andrew Lovett), Telegraph, AIM (comments from CFG), Guardian, CFG (in-depth analysis, link at bottom of the page)
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  Government funding  
  Energy Bills Discount Scheme  
The new Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS) commenced on 1 April 2023 and will run until 31 March 2024. Under the Scheme the government will provide two levels of support for energy bills for non-domestic customers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and museums, libraries and historic buildings are eligible for the higher level of support, which has a lower cost threshold and provides a higher discount.  
However, eligible organisations will need to apply for the higher level support via a digital portal, which is due to open on the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero's website shortly. Museums will need to provide information on their organisation, energy supplier, relevant energy supply contract references and applicable metre point references. Further details are available on the EBDS website. EBDS gov.uk
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  Cultural Investment Fund beneficiaries announced  
Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer announced the museums, cultural venues and libraries that have been awarded money from the Cultural Investment Fund investment on 20 March. The fund, which totals more than £200m and was launched in 2019, is made up of three separate streams, the Cultural Development Fund, the Libraries Improvement Fund and the Museum Estate and Development Fund. In this round of funding, £32.4m has gone to eight Cultural Development Fund projects, £4.9m to 27 projects as part of the Libraries Improvement Fund and £21.4m has gone to 36 museums through the Museum Estate and Development Fund (MEND).
70 venues were supported with £60m investment. Large grants went to Basildon Borough Council - £4.4m, Bradford, UK City of Culture 2025 - £4.9m and the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent - £5m. Both Potteries Museum and Royal Cornwall Museum have been in the news recently facing cuts to local authority funding affecting opening hours, staff and possible closure. Lucy Frazer said: “This investment will help to level up access to arts and culture for everyone, no matter where they live. It can also boost tourism, support local business and drive local economic growth.” Museums Journal, Guardian
Other notable awards include:
  • £381,920 to Norwich Castle Museum in Norwich
  • £540,000 to South Shields Museum & Art Gallery in South Shields, South Tyneside
  • £498,000 to The Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter
  • £185,608 to The Museum of Cornish Life in Helston, Cornwall
  • £1,494,284 to Royal Cornwall Museum in Truro, Cornwall
Gov.uk, ACE (data for 2022/2023), Museums Journal, M+H Advisor
Also: Cultural Investment Fund round three opens. The three capital investment funds – Cultural Development Fund, Museum Estate and Development Fund (MEND) and Libraries Improvement Fund are now open to expressions of interest. The dates for MEND are:
  • Expressions of interest: midday 21 April 2023
  • Full application forms open: 9am on 30 May 2023
  • Full application deadline: midday 18 August 2023
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  Levelling up and culture funding  
Round up of commentary – arts and culture funding
There have been a number of articles and opinion pieces on arts and culture funding. On Radio 4 BBC Front Row spoke to Arts Minister, Lord Parkinson, post Cultural Investment Fund announcement on 22 March. They cover how organisations were chosen, why DCMS rather than ACE distributes the funding, levelling up and cuts to local authority funding. There are also contributions from Lorraine Beardmore, Conservative Councillor for Stoke, on the Potteries Museum investment and Eliza Easton, Deputy Director of NESTA, on local authority cuts. BBC (from 1.20)
  • Britain’s art institutions face death by a thousand cuts. Why are they just putting up with it?, 22 Mar, Charlotte Higgins, Guardian.
  • “Cultural Levelling Up”: Behind the government’s arts funding dilemma, Andrew Kersley, 26 Feb, The House.
  • Trite discussions about ‘regions’ distract from UKs fundamental arts funding problems, John Kampfner, 22 Feb, Art Newspaper.
  • Arts education – Editorial – The Guardian view on arts education: a creativity in crisis, 7 Feb 2023, Guardian
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  Heritage Fund extends deadline for Dynamic Collections Campaign  
Museums (accredited and non-accredited), archives, historic libraries and community organisations which hold collections across the UK now have until 24 April to apply for up to £250,000 in Lottery funding to help build resilience in the heritage sector. The fund supports projects that:
  • Make collections relevant to a wider range of people.
  • Actively involve the public in collections management, use and development.
  • Take a creative, strategic, and sustainable approach to collections. HLF
two dogs sleeping on a brightly coloured green and blue cushion
David Hockney, Dog Painting 19, 1995 © David Hockney. Photo Credit_ Richard Schmidt Collection The David Hockney Foundation
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  Visitor and income statistics   
  Annual visitor figures for DCMS sponsored museums  
DCMS has published the 2021-22 annual visitor figures for the 15 museums which it directly funds, showing 17.1m visits, a decrease of 64% from 48.2m in 2018/19 (pre-pandemic), but is nearly 7 times larger than in 2020/21 (2.6m). Detail includes:
  • Visitors to DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries outside London made up 20% of the total visits in 2021/22, this is a decrease of 3 percentage points since 2018/19.
  • In 2021/22 there were approx 3.2m visits by children (under 16) to DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries, accounting for 19% of all visits.
  • In 2021/22 there were an estimated 1.3m visits by overseas residents, a 94% decrease from 22.7m in 2018/19 but is nearly 23 times higher than in 2020/21 when there were 54,000 overseas visits.
  • In 2021/22, there were a total of 136.8m unique website visits to DCMS sponsored Museum websites, the highest recorded since records began. This is an increase of 18% from 116.4m in 2020/21 and an increase of 11% since 2018/19 (pre-pandemic) when there were 123.2m unique website visits.
  • In 2021/22, the total self-generated income for DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries amounted to over £246m, an increase of over 50% from £160.3m in 2020/21 but still 15% lower than pre-pandemic in 2018/19 when it was nearly £290m. Gov.uk (overview), Gov.uk (report), M+H Advisor 
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  Annual income statistics for DCMS-sponsored organisations  
DCMS published income statistics for the 19 organisations it directly funds through Grant In Aid for 2021-22. The total income of DCMS-funded cultural organisations was £4.1 billion, lower than £4.2 billion in 2020/21 but higher than £3.6 billion in 2018/19 (pre-pandemic). Adjusting for inflation, this was a 2.2% decrease compared to 2020/21 and a 4.9% increase compared to 2018/19. Detail includes:
  • In 2021/22, DCMS-funded cultural organisations received a total of £1.7b in Grant-in-Aid. This is a decrease of 6.2% from 2020/21, after adjusting for inflation. However this is a 50.4% increase, after adjusting for inflation, since 2018/19, pre-pandemic.
  • Organisations generated a total of £413.3m through fundraising income (excluding donated objects). This is a real term increase of 12.3% from 2020/21 and an increase of 6.8% from 2018/19 pre-pandemic.
  • DCMS-funded cultural organisations generated a total of £1.8b through other activities such as trading, investment income and admission fees. This is a decrease of 2.5% from 2020/21, after adjusting for inflation. This is also a real term decrease of 18.5% from 2018/19, pre-pandemic. Gov.uk (overview), Gov.uk (report)
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  ALVA – Attraction visits for 2022: visitor numbers increase but Covid and cost-of-living crisis have an impact – NHM still the most visited museum  
The Association of Leading Visitor Attractions has published visitor numbers for its 300+ members for 2022, ranging from museums to heritage sites, parks and zoos. Visits totalled 123.4m, a 69% increase on 2021 figures but still reflecting a decline of 23% on pre-pandemic figures from 2019. Figures show that:
  • Indoor sites saw their strongest year-on-year growth with 176% increase.
  • Museums and galleries saw a surge of 158% more visitors compared with 2021.
  • London saw the strongest performance with visits up 152% year-on-year, Scotland up 128%, and Northern Ireland up 120%. The North West saw a 49% increase, the largest for a region of England outside London. NHM, the most visited indoor attraction and second most visited overall, saw a 196% increase to 4,654,608 visitors. NHM’s recovery was driven by domestic visitors. Their most popular exhibition was ‘Dippy Returns’ with over 1 million visitors. NHM Director, Douglas Gurr said, 'It is testament to our innovative and inspiring public programme of events and exhibitions which included Our Broken Planet: How We Got Here and Ways to Fix it, Dippy Returns and Wildlife Photographer of the Year as well as the dedication of our Visitor Experience team who work so hard to ensure visitors have a brilliant day out.'
  • The British Museum moved from 6th to 3rd place with 4,097,253 visitors a 209% increase. The Tate Modern was 4th (202% increase, 3.9m) and the National Gallery moved back into the top 10 (274% increase, 2.7m).
  • Other museums in the top ten are the V&A (176% increase, 2.4m) and the Science Museum (144% increase, 2.3m).
  • In Scotland, the National Museum of Scotland rose 9 places to 11th (199% increase, 1.97m). Glasgow’s Riverside Museum also saw a 276% increase moving from 61st to 19th place with 1.2m visitors. In Northern Ireland, Titanic Belfast was the most visited attraction (177% increase, 620K).
  • The cost-of-living crisis was reflected in visitor numbers with free attractions seeing their strongest year-on-year growth at an increase of 183%.
Bernard Donoghue, Director of Alva, commented: “Many attractions are still not back up to 2019 visitor levels due, mainly, to the absence of international visitors, notably from China and the Far East, but I am confident that they will return this year and we will see a continuing health recovery.” ALVA (table), ALVA (overview), NHM, Guardian, BBC, M+H, Evening Standard, Scotsman
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  London struggles to hit pre-pandemic levels in global art museum statistics  
The Art Newspaper has published findings from its annual survey of visits to art museums globally. It found that:
  • There were 141m visits to the top 100 institutions in 2022, up from 71m in 2021, although still significantly down on the 230m they attracted in 2019.
  • Recovery is uneven with China impacted by their zero-Covid strategy and Russia by the fallout of the Ukraine invasion.
  • The Louvre was the most visited museum, with 7.7m visitors, up from 2.8m visitors in 2021 but down on 9.6m visits in 2019.
  • UK museums in the top 10 included the British Museum and Tate Modern. The Tate Modern had the largest percentage increase from 2021-22 of any institution in the top 10 at 236%, although still 36% down on 2019 figures.
  • There was a slow bounce-back by UK museums as a whole. The drop in international tourism being the main factor. Most UK museums saw strong year-on-year growth in 2022, many tripling their attendance over the lockdown-affected 2021.
  • The National Gallery is facing the slowest recovery. Last year it had 2.7m visitors, down 55% on its 2019 figure of 6m. It has thus lost almost 3.3m visitors, more than any other museum in the survey. In percentage terms, however, three other UK institutions did worse: Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge was down 57% on its 2019 visitors, while V&A Dundee and the Wellcome Collection in London were both down 55%.
  • Other bright spots in the UK were mostly north of the border. The Burrell Collection in Glasgow reopened in March 2022 to much higher visitor figures than previously, welcoming an 483,000 visitors. Edinburgh museums did well, too, with the National Museum of Scotland receiving nearly 2m visitors and the Scottish National Gallery 1.3m, both similar to pre-pandemic times.
  • A British Museum spokesperson attributes the reduction to several factors. The museum has been particularly hit by fewer visitors from China. Extreme weather in 2022—a cold winter and then a hot summer—discouraged visitors, as did a series of transport strikes.
  • The top 15 most followed museums on social media remained the same. The National Gallery had the largest increase in followers in the top 10 at 9.7% to 4.3m, since joining Snapchat and TikTok they have gained almost 240,000 followers. The most followed UK institution remains Tate with 10.3m.
  • TikTok continues to be a slow burner for the world’s leading museums, with only 21 of the 100 most visited museums actually using it and just six of those having more than 100,000 followers. Madrid’s Museo Nacional del Prado continues to top the charts with more than 440,000 followers.
  • Covid-era booking systems may be putting off visitors to UK museums. Art Newspaper (online booking). Art Newspaper (overview), Art Newspaper (report)
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  Visitor predictions for 2023 from Visit Britain  
Visit Britain’s March 2023 sentiment tracker shows 53% of UK adults still think ‘the worst is yet to come’ in regard to the cost-of-living crises (a reduction of 5% from Feb 23). With 73% intending an overnight UK trip at any point in the last 12 months (an increase of 1% on Feb 23). The proportion more likely to chose an overseas trip than a domestic trip is at its highest since June 2022. Visit Britain (Report)
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  Katapult release Visitor Attraction Industry Trends for 2023  
Insights include -
  • Conscious consumers - 80% of shoppers worldwide are doing more research, compared to 12 months ago. Consumers looking for value for money from purchases, they are also looking to buy from companies with the same values as them - sustainability and the protection of natural resources being one example.
  • Respite zones - 20% of the world’s population is classified as neurodiverse. Some visitor attractions are already responding to the needs of both children and adults who need calmer spaces in themed environments. This year will see attractions understand both the requirement and benefit to accommodate for a fifth of their annual guests.
  • Hands-on experimentation - 81% of people surveyed will spend more at an experiential retail experience, compared to a traditional store. Guests are wanting to inject more physical experiences into their mainly digital, screen-based world. Katapult (overview), Katapult (report)
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  Brexit impact  
  PEC publishes two new papers on the impact of Brexit on the creative industries  
A research paper - Post-Brexit migration and accessing foreign talent in the Creative Industries (Liverpool John Moores University) and discussion report - Brexit Uncertainty and Trade in Services: Evidence from the UK Creative Industries 2014-2019 (Aston Business School) highlight that many UK firms are struggling to hire the international talent they need to compete in global markets. Visa restrictions and regulatory bureaucracy are imposing costs that creative businesses can't afford. This is particularly challenging for the creative sector, which has a mobile, freelance workforce. PEC (migration report) PEC (trade report)
Also: ‘Art world insiders on Brexit, three years on’, 2 March, Art Newspaper includes quote from Tristram Hunt, Director V&A. “As an organisation we’re still searching for the benefits of Brexit,” Hunt says. “It’s really important that London retains its place as a world class cultural and artistic destination, with great museums, a strong art market. That all adds up to a strong and successful global city. No doubt we’re seeing much more competition from Paris in terms of investment in museums, philanthropy, the art market and art fairs. We need to work out how to respond, in a collegiate and friendly manner.” Art Newspaper
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  Health and wellbeing  
  The Impact of Arts and Cultural Engagement on Population Health – UCL  
A new UCL report reveals insights into peoples’ art activity and links to longevity and health outcomes. Findings from major cohort studies in the UK and USA from 3,000 sources covering the period 2017-2022 show profound implications for population health. The evidence offers multiple avenues related to policy and practice for preventing, treating and managing physical and mental health across society. Insights include –
  • More positive health and social behaviours in children and young people.
  • Better mental health in adulthood.
  • Lower risk of depression and dementia in later life.
  • Lower levels of chronic pain and frailty, and even a longer life.
The report also summarises 5 areas of action -
  • Art engagement in schools – for long term physical and mental health of young people with a recommendation on policies that support teaching and training of the arts in schools.
  • Clinical and community care – scaling social prescribing schemes to widen access. Formalising arts engagement, especially for those with chronic conditions.
  • Preventative public health – not limiting programmes to formal referral paths.
  • Using arts to reduce population health disparities – prioritising those from lower socio-economic backgrounds who stand to gain the most from the arts.
  • Enhanced longitudinal and complex research – encouraging funding initiatives that support advanced and novel research approaches that prioritise inclusion of arts and cultural engagement to enrich data for analysis. UCL (summary article) Report (full report)
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  Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy and MyCake launch free online benchmark report and dashboard  
The new version of the benchmark includes the latest data for 2018/19, covering publicly-accessible data from all 801 organisations in the ACE national portfolio. The purpose is to support leaders and trustees of organisations to compare and contrast their current performance to that of their peers. Data covers income and expenditure, alongside fundraising and financial resilience. The Cause4 Arts and Cultural Fundraising Benchmark report highlighted –
  • Funding from ACE was the largest single funding source across all four years accounting for almost £4 in every £10 of income generated in 2018/19. This was a lower share than in previous years.
  • Average total expenditure was equivalent to 102% of turnover in 2018/19 – indicating that many organisations were running a deficit.
  • Over the last two years for which there was data, average expenditure exceeded income, suggesting that NPOs are, on average, reporting deficits.
  • Average spend per organisation on fundraising fell by £50,000 per year over four years.
Sign up for a Q&A on using the Benchmarking tool on 17th July 2023 1-2pm Register here
Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy (website) Benchmark Report
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  ‘Data Driven Museums’ publication  
SHARE Museums East and Sue Davies have published ‘Data Driven Museums’ to help improve how museums in the East of England use data to inform decisions and make improvements. SHARE (free to access PDF)
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  Education and employment in the creative sector  
  Ofsted publishes review of art education in schools  
The latest curriculum research review has been published (22 Feb) exploring factors that contribute to a high quality art education. Amanda Spielman, Ofsted Chief Inspector, said: “The subject should command an important place in every school.” Gov.uk (press release), Gov.uk (review)
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  PEC Good Work Review explores job quality in the creative industries  
120 organisations contributed data to a year-long independent study into job quality and employment practices in the creative sector covering indicators including fair pay, flexible working and employee representation. The Creative Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC) report released on 23 Feb shows significant variation in the picture across the creative sector, in museums, galleries and libraries collective representation is stronger, investment in skills better and hours more modest, but pay rates are more limited, workers struggle to find full-time work, and job satisfaction is low. Job quality for creative freelancers is a particular concern. Self-employed creative workers across all sub-sets show considerable autonomy and control over their working hours and job satisfaction is high. But hours can be extremely long, unpaid work and pay dissatisfaction is high, investment in professional development low and mechanisms to enable worker voice more limited. Some takeaways from the report include –
  • Creative workers are twice as likely to be self-employed.
  • Pay dissatisfaction is particularly high in museums, galleries and libraries.
  • 70% of those that are not permanent staff are under contract for a fix period or task compared to 47% across all industries.
  • Class-based exclusion in the creative industries is striking. Creative sub-sectors comprise 8 out of the 10 worst performing sectors in the economy for (under) representation of people from working class backgrounds.
  • In museums, galleries and libraries employee voice is high, likely associated with higher levels of trade union membership.
  • For those employed in museums, galleries and libraries, earnings are in-line with or below average rates of pay across the economy.
The review identifies 4 priorities and 16 policy recommendations including –
  • Make it a requirement for all organisations in receipt of Government or Industry funding or participating in major creative events or awards to sign-up to Good Work principles.
  • Enhance relevance and responsiveness of the skills system to needs of creative industries, strengthening technical educational pathways for the creative sector.
  • Develop a ‘Freelancer Test’ to consider efficacy and impact of new legislation and policy on self-employed creative workers. PEC (news story), PEC (report), PEC (summary)
a white poodle with a pink bow on its head begging on its hind paws
Jean-Jacques Bachelier, Dog of the Hanava Breed, 1768, oil on canvas, French School, © The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle
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  Environment and sustainability  
  Phase 4 Low Carbon Skills Fund announced  
The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero has made available up to £17m of funding for Phase 4 LCSF which will be delivered by Salix Finance. LCSF provide grants for public sector organisations to engage specialist and expert advice and skills required to create a robust heat decarbonisation plan and/or detailed designs which will prepare for heat decarbonisation and energy efficiency works. Changes to Phase 4 include –
  • Grant value caps
  • Funding for standalone detailed designs
The application portal opens on 26 April. Successful applicants will need to complete their funded activity by 28 March 2024. There is a webinar – ‘What makes a good heat decarbonisation plan?’ on 6 April at 2pm with more details. Webinar, SALIX (details), SALIX (resources), Gov.uk (previous recipients)
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  Planning survey from Historic Houses and CLA highlight barriers to decarbonisation  
87% of Historic Houses and Country Land and Business Association (CLA) owners see the planning system as a major barrier to decarbonisation and 48% of owners regard their experience of the planning system as ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ in a new report released Dec 2022. Report, Historic Houses (statement), FT
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  NHM launches ‘Our Broken Planet’ Survey  
The NHM is seeking responses to a survey to help shape a new programme of support for museums looking to engage audiences with the planetary emergency. Aimed at small museums starting their journey in environmental and youth engagement, and organisations interested in developing and sharing their experiences in this area. NHM (survey), NHM (Our Broken Planet)
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  Podcast on climate awareness in museums  
For Arts Sake podcast features Dr Jenny Newell, Curator for Climate Change, at the Australian Museum. In the 30 minute episode Newell talks about the importance of climate awareness in museums and galleries and shares examples of her work. For Arts’ Sake
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  Accessibility and Inclusion  
  Inclusive Cultures leadership programme from Clore Leadership  
The deadline for applications to Inclusive Cultures from Clore Leadership is 17 April. The Transforming Leadership programme is a 6-month disabled-led professional development course. It draws on Inclusive Leadership theories and practice and the lived experiences of D/deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people and communities and uses coaching techniques to inform thinking and action. Clore
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  Curating for Change launches recruitment action plan  
The ground-breaking work placement programme for D/deaf and disabled curators in museums has released an action plan to inform museums and organisations who want to transform their recruitment practices to become more accessible and equitable. Their action plan ‘We Are Not All The Same’ provides practical steps to update advertising and pre-application materials and the interview process. Curating for Change
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  ‘Pleasure, Connection and Purpose’ report from AIM looks at tapping into public emotions  
This Association of Independent Museums and Art Fund report aims to better understand how museums can leverage emotions to build greater public support. Using case studies to help museums, funders and sector support organisations make a more compelling case to the public, and to policymakers, for support. Case studies include – Horniman Museum and Gardens: Reset Agenda and IWM North: Yemen: Inside a Crisis. AIM
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  DCMS publishes Community Life Survey 2021/22  
The Community Life Survey (a household self-completion survey of adults aged 16+ in England) ran from Oct 21 to Sept 22 saw the lowest numbers of participation rates since data collection started in 2013/14 on the Community Life Survey at 16%. Published on 28 Feb, although in line with 2020/21 rates (17%) it equates to approximately 7 million people in England taking part in formal volunteering at least once a month in the past 12 months. The main motivations for volunteering were to improve things/help people and the main barriers were work commitments. Gov.uk (report), Gov.uk (volunteering and charitable giving), Civil Society (analysis)
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  AIM Annual Conference 2023  
The Association of Independent Museums Conference will be in Edinburgh on 15-16 June which will explore what it means to be independent in today’s museum sector. Sessions include ‘Strategic approaches to admissions pricing’ and ‘Communities re-interpreting objects’. Speakers currently confirmed include Sally Dixon, Assistant Director, Beamish Museum and Matthew Moran, Museum Director, HMS Unicorn. Online and in-person tickets on sale now with early bird rates available for AIM members until 28 April. AIM
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  Museum Association Conference 2023  
The 2023 Museum Association Conference is open for booking, running from 7-9 Nov in Gateshead. This year’s theme is ‘The Power of Museums’, aiming to create a new vision for a sector facing multiple financial, ethical and practical challenges. The conference will be in-person and online. The Benevolent Fund also offers 20 in-person and 12 online free places to individual MA members who face barriers due to ethnicity, disability, socio-economic background and gender identity or sexual orientation (LGBTQ). Deadline to apply for an Inclusive Place is 7 Sept. MA
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  GEM Conference 2023  
 The Historic Dockyard in Chatham will host this year's GEM Conference on 13-15 Sept. The title of the 2023 conference is 'Ambitious for Learning: Inclusive, Quality Programmes for All'. Early Bird tickets are open until 16 June for this online and in-person event. Deadlines for workshop and presentation proposals is 12 May. GEM
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  AMA Conference 2023  
This year’s Arts Marketing Association Conference will be held in Leeds from 12-14 July. The focus of the conference is ‘Audiences at the Heart’ and will include sessions on growing audience loyalty post-pandemic, decolonising arts brands and AI in arts marketing. There are 33 bursaries available to cover the full cost of the conference. AMA
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  MuseumNext Digital Summit  
15-16 May this virtual summit attracts an international programme of speakers on the latest digital technology including talks on AI and hybrid exhibition planning. Speakers include representatives from Rijksmuseum, National Museums Scotland and National Museum of African American Music. MuseumNext
two dogs one sitting and one laying down
Thomas Gainsborough, Tristram and Fox, c.1775–85 © Tate Images
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  M+H announces Awards shortlist  
Museums + Heritage has announced the shortlist for its annual Awards, celebrating the best in the sector with 18 categories covering topics from exhibitions and shops to conservation, partnerships and volunteering. New awards for 2023 include – Innovator of the Year, Team of the Year and Sector Support Award. The list includes the following NMDC members:
  • Sustainable Project of the Year in partnership with the National Lottery Heritage Fund – Leeds Museums and Galleries: This ‘Life of Earth’ gallery at Leeds City Museum and Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery: Once Upon a Planet.
  • Team of the Year – British Museum and National Museums Liverpool.
  • Learning Programme of the Year – The National Archives: 20sStreets.
  • Community Engagement Programme of the Year – Museum of the Home: What’s your cup of tea?
  • Partnership of the Year – Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums: Ways to Play – free days out for families.
  • Permanent Exhibition of the Year – Science Museum: Technicians Gallery and Glasgow Life, Event & Beck Interiors: The Burrell Collection.
  • Marketing + Communications Campaign of the Year – RAF Museum Midlands, Tate Liverpool and IWM.
  • Volunteers of the Year – Leeds Museums and Galleries and Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery.
Winners will be announced on 10th May. M+H, NLHF (Sustainable Project shortlist)
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  Family Friendly Museum Award 2023  
Nominations have opened for the Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum Awards 2023, open to museums, galleries, archives and heritage sites. Categories include best small, medium, large and accessible museum. There is a new category of Best Youth Project – Climate open only to museums in recognition of innovative and thoughtful projects that are engaging young people with the climate emergency and sustainability through museums. Free to enter, the deadline for nominations is 5th June. Kids in Museums
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  DCN Awards announced  
The Digital Culture Network and Arts Council England announced the 2023 Digital Culture Award winners recognising the best in digital engagement, transformation and use of technology in creativity and culture across 9 categories. Winners included Content Creator Award - Roland Lane for SONZAI, a ground-breaking mixed reality art installation at the V&A and People’s Choice Award – Crab Museum in Margate creating a radical and ‘unhinged’ social media strategy. DCN
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  Appointments and resignations  
Julia Lopez MP has been appointed Minister of State for Media, Tourism and Creative Industries, by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). She is also a Minister of State in the Department of Science, Innovation and Technology. Julia is the MP for Hornchurch and Upminster in Greater London and first elected in 2017. Gov.uk
Sam Mullins announced his intention to step down as Director and CEO of the London Transport Museum after 28 years leading the organisation. He will step down later in 2023 upon the appointment of a successor to lead the museum’s new five-year strategy. LTM, M+H Advisor
Dame Julie Kenny has been appointed Commissioner of Historic England for an initial four-year term by Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer. She will oversee the work of Historic England and the National Heritage Collection. Historic England
Trish Thomas, Head of Digital Innovation at the Museum of London and Monique Baptiste-Brown previously of the Black Cultural Archives have been appointed to the board of the Arts Marketing Association.
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  Catch up  
National Motorcycle Museum sell off some of the collection after funding short fall, 1 Mar 2023, BBC
Los Angeles Museums are conducting the US’s biggest free admission experiment, 18 Feb 2023, Art Newspaper
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  In the news  
We know the Art Museum lost its Super Bowl bet. Here’s what it’s ponying up, 22 Feb 2023, Philadelphia Inquirer
Research: The transformative power of sabbaticals, 22 Feb 2023, Harvard Business Review
Roman burial unearthed at hidden Garforth cemetery, 13 Mar 2023, BBC News
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Posts being advertised on the NMDC jobs board this month include:
Also: In September, the current Chair of Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums Strategic Board, Right Hon Baroness Joyce Quin will step down from the role after six years of supporting TWAM. The requirement process has begun for a new Chair to support TWAM's ambitious future plans. For more information about the Chair of Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums Strategic Board download the recruitment pack: https://www.twmuseums.org.uk/news/seeking-a-new-chair-for-tyne-and-wear-archives-and-museums-strategic-board
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