NMDC is seeking a part-time Administrator to work with our small friendly team. The postholder will support delivery of NMDC meetings and events, external communications, projects and members’ services. They will work closely with colleagues across NMDC member institutions and gain an extensive knowledge of the UK museums and cultural sector. The deadline for applications is 12pm on 24th July. NMDC jobs website
As featured in this month’s images the originally named Museum of Childhood reopened on the 1 July after a 3 year, £13m re-development as Young V&A. Officially opened by The Princess of Wales, the Grade II listed building features three new galleries; Play, Imagine and Design, aimed at different ages from babies to teens. Their first ticketed exhibition – Japan: Myths to Manga will open in October. Tristram Hunt, Director of the V&A said: “Young V&A is the UK’s first and only free museum designed with and for children, families, and young people. We’ve created a new space dedicated to the way that children play and learn, to support them as they grow, and it was wonderful to share the project with The Princess of Wales, given her personal commitment to promoting the importance of investing in children’s early years.” Young V&A (press release), Guardian, Telegraph, Evening Standard, Independent, Art Newspaper (£), Financial Times, Design Week
Also: Tristram Hunt interview with John Orna-Ornstein in the National Trust’s Cultural Heritage Magazine which includes a discussion on culture wars and restitution. National Trust (from page 8) (pdf, 36 pgs)
National Gallery’s Constable painting pops up in a shopping centre
As part of the National Gallery’s Visits tour a painting by John Constable has gone on display at the Viking Shopping Centre in Jarrow. 'The Cornfield', painted in 1826, went on display in an empty shop as part of the third iteration of the Visits tour. Working with Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums alongside South Tyneside Council has given local people the opportunity to see the National Gallery artwork on their doorstep. Gabriele Finaldi, Director of the National Gallery, said: “Running the Visits our is a highlight for us at the Gallery. It is an exciting way for us to connect with new partners all over the UK, and to be part of their outstanding work with their local communities. Through our collection we want to enrich lives by connecting art, people and ideas across centuries, countries and cultures; our partners drive the conversations about the painting and how they want to respond to it. It is always exciting to see the playful, creative and inclusive learning opportunities that grow out of these collaborations.” National Gallery, BBC
Tate and the Museum of the Home partner on painting acquisition
‘A Young Teacher’ painted in 1861 by Rebecca Solomon has been purchased by Tate and the Museum of the Home with thanks to a number of funders including the Art Fund and the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The joint acquisition will see the painting go on display at Tate Britain’s new Pre-Raphaelite gallery from the end of June 2023 before moving to the Museum of the Home in the autumn. The total costs of the acquisition were not disclosed. Tate, M+H Advisor
Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s ‘L’allée au boi’ is the first impressionist painting to enter a public collection in Northern Ireland and will go on display at the Ulster Museum from 6 June. The painting has been allocated to the Ulster Museum as an acceptance-in-lieu from the estate of Sheran, Lady Hornby. Kathryn Thomson, Chief Executive of National Museums NI said: “Art remains central to our offering here at Ulster Museum, and it’s incredibly important to us to continue enhancing our collection so audiences have access to masterpieces such as this.”National Museums NI, Belfast Live
The free gallery with over 70 objects aims to inspire young people to pursue engineering careers and challenges common misconceptions of what engineers do providing fresh perspective on the diversity of engineering roles. Opened on International Women in Engineering Day, the gallery located on Level 1 of the museum complements the Technicians: The David Sainsbury Gallery, which opened in November 2022. Sir Ian Blatchford, Director and Chief Executive of the Science Museum Group, said: “Everyday life depends on the skills and creativity of engineers. In bringing this fabulous new gallery to life, we're delighted to be working with the QEPrize (Queen Elizabeth Prize), whose recognition of some of the most brilliant minds and important innovations of our time is so vital.” Science Museum
IWM to open new art focussed galleries in November
The Blavatnik Art, Film and Photography Galleries will open at IWM London on 10 November 2023, ahead of Remembrance Sunday. The Galleries will include around 500 works from IWM’s collections and will explore how artists, photographers and filmmakers bear witness to, document and tell the story of conflict, and the public’s understanding of war. The galleries will include a dedicated Screening Space, showcasing a programme of IWM’s historical film collection which includes over 23,000 hours of footage. IWM, M+H Advisor
RAMM awarded National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) grant
The Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery has been awarded £247,708 from the NLHF to undertake a major project to reorganise how it catalogues its collections. ‘Changing Stories: Connecting and collecting with Exeter’s communities’ was funded through the Dynamic Collections strand and will see two new fixed-term posts being created for a Digital Media Officer and Engagement Officer, as well as four University of Exeter internship placements. RAMM
National Science and Media Museum celebrates 40 years
The National Science and Media Museum in Bradford celebrated its 40th birthday on the 16th June. To commemorate the occasion they have produced a film showcasing favourite memories of the museum since opening in 1983 as the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television. The museum is currently temporarily closed to the public until summer 2024 as it undergoes a £6m redevelopment. National Science and Media Museum, Film (mp4 download), BBC
HMS Caroline awarded ‘Flagship of the Year 2023’ status
HMS Caroline, operated by the National Museum of the Royal Navy, has been awarded Flagship of the Year for 2023 by National Historic Ships UK. The award provides an opportunity to demonstrate and celebrate the value of historic vessels to the wider public. HMS Caroline, berthed in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter, will fly the flag as an ambassador for the UK’s maritime heritage and will receive a special broad pennant and brass plaque in recognition of her planned public engagement into 2024 as she celebrates her Belfast centenary. NMRN, National Historic Ships
It is all about the kids this month as July rolls into the Summer holidays. We are featuring the brand new Young V&A which opened on 1st July and Wonderlab: The Bramall Gallery which will open at The Railway Museum on the 27 July.
Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer outlines the Creative Industries Sector Vision
On the 13 June, Secretary of State for DCMS, Lucy Frazer, announced the government’s plans for growing the economy and boosting UK creative industries by £50 billion. The Creative Industries Sector Vision wants to create 1 million jobs by 2030 with £77m of new funding for the sector. Created with industry via the Creative Industries Council, the plans are framed around key principles for driving growth – facilitating innovation and investment, alongside building a skilled workforce.
The vision mentions the recent museums and galleries relief extension, investment in Innovation Accelerators pilot by the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology which is investing in new projects in Greater Manchester and Glasgow developing immersive technologies and museums in the metaverse. It also recognises the important role museums and galleries play in bringing content to local communities and making places more attractive to live, work and visit.
The 2030 Environmental Object within the vision also highlights the growing role the creative industries can play in tackling environmental challenges with the Creative Industries Council leading on the development of a Creative Climate Charter, unifying the sector on shared goals and principles. Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer said: “The government is backing our creatives to maximise the potential of the creative industries. This Sector Vision is about driving innovation, attracting investment and building on the clusters of creativity across the country. And from first days at school to last days of work, we will nurture the skills needed to build a larger creative workforce to harness the talent needed for continued success. Working with the industry this vision is helping the UK creative sectors go from strength to strength - providing jobs and opportunities, creating world leading content and supporting economic growth across the country.”Gov.uk (press release), Gov.uk (paper, pdf 60pgs), Arts Professional (£), Guardian, Independent
Holiday Activities and Food Programme from Department of Education
The Department of Education is investing over £200m a year in the Holiday Activities and Food Programme in every local authority. The clubs provide healthy food and activities to support children in receipt of free school meals during the school holidays. A number of museums are already helping to ensure children and young people receive enriching activities at the holiday clubs. Examples include providing activities through HAF clubs and running HAF activities on site through for example museum tours and leading museum workshops (including for display). Bradford has incorporated visits to the National Science and Media museum to its HAF offer and Barnet has delivered in partnership with the RAF museum offering museum tours and activities.
The cultural HAF partnerships in place are having a significant impact by:
Supporting the museums sector through LA commissioning of cultural services.
Enabling arts and cultural organisations to increase and diversify reach including to economically deprived children, young people and families.
Engaging older children and young people in HAF.
Increasing participation in high quality arts and cultural activities.
Encouraging better use of arts and museums education in schools, and in lifelong learning.
Many clubs have shared their stories on social media, using the hashtag #HAF2023. Museums can contact the NMDC for details of their local HAF coordinator at their local authority to discuss ways to support the programme or contact [email protected] to discuss ideas for supporting the programme. Gov.uk
Mayor of London report sheds light on impact of levelling up on the culture sector and creative industries in London
The Mayor of London and Greater London Authority (GLA) have published a report exploring the nature of the culture sector and London’s creative industries highlighting how London and the UK are interdependent. It highlights the £13 billion in taxes paid by London’s creative industries, 8% of all taxes paid by the city. It also comments on Arts Council’s restructuring of National Partnership Organisations. Other headlines include –
The importance of the creative industries to the economy.
Central London is a major hub that had not recovered from the pandemic.
The creative industries also face risks from Brexit and public expenditure restraint.
Government support has been directed away from London, to the detriment of the UK and London, both culturally and economically.
The creative industries are growing faster in London than elsewhere.
Central Government funding for culture in the UK is insufficient and London does not get a disproportionate share. GLA (overview), GLA (report, pdf, 125pgs)
Also: Issues that will define the next General Election. The UK 2040 Options project run by Nesta have undertaken research looking at the public priorities heading into the next election in the key battleground constituencies. Inflation, NHS, energy prices and immigration are seen as the most important issues. When looking at longer term challenges, climate became more important. UK 2040
Also: 'Twelve Culture Secretaries in 13 years: what does this say about the Tories attitude to the arts?' 9 July 2023, Observer
Mapping Museums research project award £1m in funding
The Mapping Museums research team has been awarded funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council for their project ‘Mapping Museum Closures 2000-2025’. ‘Mapping Museum Closure’, based at Birkbeck, University of London and at King’s College London, and will run for two years, beginning in October 2023. It is led by Fiona Candlin, Professor of Museology. The new research will use trans-disciplinary methods to analyse closure and collections dispersal within the UK museums sector. Its aim is to examine the geographic distribution of closure, to better understand types of closure (e.g., whether museums are mothballed or disbanded), and to document the flows of objects and knowledge from museums in the aftermath of closure. Mapping Museums, Museums Association, M+H Advisor
Also: The closure of the Jewish Museum was debated on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row in the context of the Holocaust Memorial, 20 June, BBC Front Row (from 24.08) also open letter to the Jewish Chronicle from Baroness Deech calling for the Holocaust Memorial to be replaced with a museum of Jewish life, 2 June, Jewish Chronicle
Lord Rothschild, interviewed for the Sunday Times, discussed his concerns that philanthropists are turning away from the arts as a focus for investment. 4 June, Times. The opening of the National Portrait Gallery sparked a piece in the New York Times – ‘With slashed funding, British museums turn to philanthropy’. 23 June, NYT (£)
The government has announced an extension to the support provided to UK Horizon Europe applicants until the end of September 2023, continuing to protect funding for UK researchers, businesses and innovators. UK Research and Innovation has issued grants worth over £1billion since the scheme was launched in November 2021. The guarantee will be in place to cover all Horizon Europe calls that close on or before 30 September 2023. The government remains in discussion on the UK’s involvement in EU research programmes and hopes that negotiations on Horizon Europe will be successful. Gov.uk (press release)
AHRC report explores cross-sector research and development projects
‘By All, For All: The Power of Partnership’ published in May is a deep-dive into the Creative Communities funding from the Arts Humanities Research Council. Covering data sets from 2012-2022 the report looks at mapping reach, best practice and potential areas for future growth. Project partners covered in the research include a number of NMDC members with case studies on ‘Diversifying Curation’, ‘Walking and Wellbeing’ with Glasgow Life, and ‘Opening up the BBC Archives to young film makers’ with partners including the National Science and Media Museum. It is a good resource to look at the depth and spread of partnerships present in collaborative funding projects. It also looks at some of the barriers to participative working. Creative Communities (pdf, 42 pgs)
‘Going Places’ expressions of interest with the Art Fund
With the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Art Fund will be launching a new UK wide funding programme ‘Going Places’ for small to medium-sized organisations with or without collections. Aiming to involve and engage under represented audiences with museum collections, the programme will open for applications in August 2023. There are a number of webinars being run in July to find out more. Art Fund (expression of interest form)
Funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and open to AIM (Association of Independent Museums) small museum members the fund inspires museums to stay relevant to their audiences with grants of up to £15,000 available across the UK. An Introductory webinar is being run on the 14 September. Deadline for applications is 31 October 2023. AIM (scheme information), AIM (webinar)
AIM Pilgrim Trust Collections Care and Conservation Grants
Association of Independent Museum members with under 50,000 visitors a year are eligible for these grants which range from £1,200 for an audit, up to £10,000 for a collections care or remedial conservation grant. Applications close on 29 September 2023. The grants enable museums to bring in conservation expertise to ensure that collections care and conservation meets professional standards, and has the most impact on the organisation, its collections, and their visitors. Applicants are encourage to contact AIM before applying. AIM
Accredited museums in Scotland can apply for up to £15,000 from Museums Galleries Scotland for applications that support small scale project work, acquisition of equipment and other resources to address time specific needs and preparation and scoping work to plan and inform future strategic development. The Round 2 expressions of interest deadline is 25 July with applications deadline 1 August 2023. MGS
Applications open for the next London Borough of Culture
In July applications will open for the 2025 and 2027 London Borough of Culture with an opportunity to receive £1.35m funding. Application guidance is already available on the website and applications in partnership with cultural organisations and local communities are welcome. Grants within the region of £5,000 are available to help resource the application process. Deadline for submitting is 30 November 2023 and announcements will be made in March 2024. Mayor of London
Also: The National Archives have published guidance for bid and creative teams working on large cultural infrastructure projects like Borough of Culture. It includes practical considerations, success stories and next steps. The National Archives
TownsWeb Archiving have launched their grants for 2023 with three grants available of £3,000 each, with match funding also available for eligible applications. Applications close on the 28th July and are open to organisations including museums and galleries for the digitisation of bound volume collections, archive collections, and photograph collections. TWA
Also: MuseumNext’s Museum Fundraising Summit, a virtual event exploring the future of museum fundraising 17-18 July, speakers include Head of Development at National Museums Liverpool, crowdfunding experts and digital marketing consultants. MuseumNext
The Government adds three new reports to the Culture and Heritage Capital Programme portal
Published on the 28 June, the new reports are:
‘Using Economic Valuation Techniques and Heritage Science to Measure the Welfare Impact of Conservation, Repair and Maintenance of Culture and Heritage Assets’. uk (paper, pdf, 10 pgs)
‘Choice Modelling and Methodology Development: Marginal Willingness to Pay for Museum Improvements’, with the National Railway Museum as the subject of analysis. uk
‘Measuring the Economic Value of the Digital Offer of Galleries and Museums’, with Derby Museum and Art Gallery, Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, The Foundling Museum and the Great North Museum. uk (website), gov.uk (pdf, 73 pgs)
The Welsh Government announces Collections Review for museums
Working with Headland Design and Associates, the Collections Review will involve the assessment of collections storage and priorities for museums and the national and sponsored bodies across Wales. The review will consider collections management across the sector, identifying urgent priorities for capital investment and look at feasibility for shared, co-located and or distributed models of storage. Welsh museums with particular issues around storage are encouraged to contact [email protected]
The Welsh Government have also launched a Collections Significance Assessment Toolkit for museums in Wales, it also contains action plans to help identify and engage with associated communities to encourage discussions around the significance of objects. Toolkit, Museums Association
Two new lists highlight historic buildings across the UK at risk
Save Britain’s Heritage have produced the 2023 Buildings At Risk register, nominated by supporters, local campaigners, conservation officers and other heritage professionals, it has seen 70 new buildings added to the list bringing the total to over 1,400 historic buildings at risk of demolition or dereliction. Save Britain’s Heritage The Victorian Society have also named their top 10 endangered buildings for 2023, including a church, sewage works and Turkish baths. Victorian Society
Europa Nostra call for nominations as ‘seven most endangered’ 2023
Europe Nostra is seeking nominations to create a list of seven most endangered heritage sites across Europe for 2023. Nominations can range from private to public owned heritage, intangible heritage, industrial and archaeological sites and more. The listing of an endangered site serves as a catalyst and incentive for the mobilisation of necessary public or private support, including funding. The listed sites are also eligible for an European Investment Bank (EIB) Heritage Grant of €10,000 per selected site to assist in implementing an agreed activity that will contribute to saving the threatened sites. Previous UK listed sites include Mavisbank House in Scotland, Grimsby Ice Factory and Egyptian Halls, Glasgow. Deadline for nominations is 15 September. Europa Nostra, Europa Nostra (nomination form)
Ireland establishes new advisory committee on the restitution and repatriation of cultural heritage
On 20 June, Ireland's Culture Minister Catherine Martin announced the establishment of a new expert committee to advise Government on issues relating to the restitution and repatriation of culturally sensitive objects in Ireland. The committee will undertake research into international best practice within the field of provenance research, restitution and repatriation, as well as engaging with key stakeholders to assess the scope of relevant cultural heritage collections in Ireland. The objective of the committee is to provide policy advice and prepare national guidelines to support Irish cultural institutions in dealing with objects of unknown provenance in their collections.
The committee will be chaired by the Rt. Hon. Sir Donnell Deeny, chairman of the U.K. government’s Spoliation Advisory Panel and member of the Court of Arbitration for Art in The Hague. Membership of the committee will be drawn from the museum, archives and gallery sector, the civil service, and legal and ethical expertise, as well as representation from claimant communities. Gov.ie
The Heads of Conservation and Scientific Departments in National Museums, Galleries, Libraries and Archives in the UK have committed in a statement to a risk management approach to environmental requirements for collection materials, which balances the care of and access to collections with the demands of sustainability. The recommendations they make will be informed by their extensive knowledge and understanding of their collections, ensuring they are both practical and effective. The statement came out of conversations from the Institute of Conservation's Conservation Policy Forum, which was set up in 2022.
The statement encourages institutions to join the initiative by adding their organisation to the growing list of supporters. The statement is also a call to action for conservators and heritage scientists to recognise and embrace their crucial role in achieving sustainability goals and reaching net zero targets. Institute of Conservation
Carbon Inventory Project report covering American museums published on Carbon Day
The Carbon Inventory Project, the first comprehensive effort to calculate the American cultural sectors carbon footprint, has been published. Participants represented a cohort of 80 museums, zoos, aquariums, historic sites, and science centres. The project aims to provide benchmarking energy usage data to help organisations track their carbon footprint, save money and help to better recognise existing carbon reduction activities in the sector. Carbon Inventory Project, American Alliance of Museums
Launch of Eco Arts Learning website from Goldsmiths University and the Climate Museum
A collaborative project between the Centre for Arts and Learning based at Goldsmiths University and the Climate Museum has resulted in a website of resources that explores Ecologies in Practice through participatory arts methods. The project explores how arts practice can enable young people to find their own ways of expressing themselves around issues in the Earth Crisis. Designed to support Key Stage 4 and 5 art and design practice in schools. Education, the arts, and the Earth Crisis will be explored in a conference on the 13-14 July at Goldsmiths University. In-person and online attendance is offered. Eco Arts Learning (website), Ecologies in Practice (conference)
The UK's first Net Zero Carbon Buildings Standard will enable industry to robustly prove their built assets are net zero carbon and in line with national climate targets. Leading industry organisations including the Better Buildings Partnership, CIBSE, Institute of Structural Engineers, the Carbon Trust and RIBA have joined forces to champion this initiative and views are being sought from a range of sectors on a ‘Technical Update and Consultation’. The Technical Update describes how new-build operational energy and embodied carbon performance levels have been developed and explains what these represent. Gathering industry views on the new build performance levels is integral to the consultation. The document also outlines the approach being taken to determine relevant budgets for carbon and energy, which inform the Net Zero Carbon limits that will be developed later this year. Organisations and representatives are being asked to submit their views by visiting the website to read more about the Technical Update & Consultation and completing the accompanying survey. Views are being sought until Thursday 31 August 2023. NZC Buildings
New Public Sector Heat Decarbonisation Fund for Scotland
A new funding scheme has been launched for Scotland offering up to £20 million in grants to support local authorities, universities and arm’s-length external organisations decarbonise their buildings. The new scheme, Scotland's Public Sector Heat Decarbonisation Fund, will be delivered by Salix. It is intended to increase the number of public sector organisations taking forward heat decarbonisation measures in their buildings.
The Fund will run alongside the existing Scottish Energy Efficiency Loan Scheme, which has been running since 2006 and offers zero interest loans for energy efficiency improvement projects. The existing loan scheme which will continue as normal. It forms part of the £200 million already committed to the public sector for energy efficiency and renewable heating over the next five years - part of the wider plan to spend £1.8 billion in this current parliamentary session on decarbonising Scotland’s buildings.
Only public sector bodies with borrowing powers can apply to the new fund. Applicants will be required to provide 20% match funding for projects and applications will open via the Salix Finance website later this summer. Salix Finance
Reminder: Energy Bills Discount Scheme applications close on 25 July. Under the scheme, the Government will provide a baseline discount to support energy bills for eligible non-domestic customers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. As with the original Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS), suppliers will automatically apply reductions to the bills of all eligible non-domestic customers. Action is required to get the higher level of support available to eligible Energy and Trade Intensive Industries (ETII). The list of eligible sectors includes libraries, archives, museums and heritage sites. Gov.uk
Also: Historic England publish heat pumps in historic buildings case studies, focussing on small-scale buildings. Historic England (pdf, 68 pgs) Also: Design Museum – Exhibition Design For Our Time: A guide to reducing the environmental impact of exhibitions (working draft), Design Museum (website), Guide (pdf 15 pgs)
Inbound visitor statistics for 2022 show visitor numbers down 24% on 2019
The latest full annual results from the International Passenger Survey by the Office for National Statistics show there were 31.2 million visits to the UK in 2022, down 24% on 2019 with visitors spending £26.5 billion throughout the year. London visitors are down 26% on 2019 with Wales seeing a 33% reduction, Scotland saw a much smaller decrease of only 7%. VisitBritain (headline data), ONS (full data)
Tourism Alliance reports on decline of EU school trips to the UK
The Tourism Alliance reported that between 2019 and 2022 the number of school children the business brought to the UK declined by 81%. The main barriers were the requirement for all students to have a passport to enter the UK (74%) and increased cost of travel to the UK (56%). Prior to Brexit, students were able to enter on a ‘List of Travellers’ scheme which was simpler and did not require a passport. Tourism Alliance (key findings, pdf, 4pgs)
The Scottish government has published a paper outlining the impact of Brexit seven years on. Impacts include: staff shortages reported at 45% of tourism business in the Highlands and Islands as a result of a loss of freedom of movement; more costly and difficult travel arrangements with long transit delays and more obstacles for touring artists; and loss of research funding. Scot.gov (press release)
Also: Museums Galleries Scotland respond to the Scottish Government’s International Culture Strategy Survey, MGS (press release), MGS (response, pdf, 17pgs)
Government appoints new panel to promote cultural education
A new panel of 22 experts will oversee the development of a plan to improve cultural education for young people. The plan will highlight the importance of high-quality cultural education in schools and promote the value of cultural and creative education including career pathways. It will also look at skills gaps and barriers to inclusion. The panel will be chaired by Baroness Deborah Bull. Arts and Heritage Minister Lord Parkinson said: “Cultural education is a vital part of children’s learning and development. It opens their eyes to the life-enhancing benefits that culture and creativity bring. It also helps to nurture the next generation of talent to pursue careers in the arts and creative industries – enriching the lives of us all.” Panel members include Darren Henley, Chief Executive of the Arts Council and Kate Fellows, Head of Learning and Access, Leeds Museum. Gov.uk (press release), gov.uk (panel), TES
Arts subjects show fall in uptake for GCSE and A-Level in latest government data
The latest provisional data from the government shows a decline in the number of students taking arts, drama and music at GCSE and A-Level. Compared to 2022, entries at GCSE have declined in the following subjects:
Arts & Design by 3.3%
Drama by 7.4%
Music by 11.8%
Compared to 2022, entries at A-level have decline by:
Bridge Network report reflects on Arts Council England funded work with children and young people
The Bridge Network Report (2012-2023) summarises the work of 10 regional Bridge Organisations, co-funded by ACE and the Department or Education at a cost of £10million a year, and their impact on young people’s cultural education. The report highlights the complex suite of activities carried out by Bridge Organisations and their multiple ways of operating across a range of stakeholders. It comments that replacing such skills will not be easy with important learning around what needs to be maintained and what stands to be lost. It also emphasises the trust needed to work with harder to reach groups which the organisations were well placed to deliver. Since funding ended it has meant cultural learning has no form of infrastructural support that explicitly recognises the need for linkage between the cultural and education sectors.
Of the ten organisations that did fulfil the Bridge role, seven go forward as National Portfolio Organisations, while three (Arts Connect, The Mighty Creatives and IVE) will receive no ACE NPO funding. Headline data from the report includes –
59% of all schools actively engaged with Bridge Organisations
2% of schools have begun an Artsmark journey
9 million children have enjoyed a richer creative curriculum through Artsmark
Tackling inequality in young people’s engagement with heritage
A new report published by the Institute for Community Research & Development, based at the University of Wolverhampton, Arts Connect and Historic England has examined seven case studies across the UK looking at young people’s engagement with heritage. Key findings include-
Young people’s participation in heritage leads to a range of personal development outcomes.
Heritage offers unique opportunities to foster identity and belonging.
Participating in projects can help tackle social exclusion.
Heritage can promote social mobility.
The report also has recommendations for future funding activities including –
Exploring heritage that the young people think is important.
Successful work focuses on diverse groups which includes families, communities and schools and is intergenerational.
Consistent patterns of measuring and reporting should be in place.
Museums and Galleries Scotland (MGS) highlight the value of a modern apprenticeship
MGS are looking for 6 museums to host a Digital Marketing Modern Apprentice and 10 museums to host a Museum & Galleries Technician Apprentice for 2023-24. The opportunities are open to new hires and existing employees aged between 16-29 years. Typically taking 12-18 months to complete, there is no cost to the employer for the training opportunity beyond the existing cost of the employees’ wages/salary. MGS (web page), MGS (video)
The decline of cultural education in schools raised in Guardian interview
Director of the V&A, Tristram Hunt, was interviewed on the opening of the Young V&A in Bethnal Green and commented on the gap between state and private schools in the provision of creative education. Hunt pointed to the 60% fall in the numbers of young people taking art and design subjects at GCSE. Hunt commented, “This is a real problem, and there’s a social inequity here because the private sector is not closing its theatres and art studios, its kilns are still producing ceramics.So we’re seeing a horrible disparity emerging between the state and the private sector in terms of provision for cultural education.”Guardian
Supporting the sector’s volunteers, the Heritage Volunteering Group have reflected on the last year in their most recent annual report. Activities included increasing their membership by 26%, working with DCMS, and playing an active role in the Volunteering Guidance Reference Group. Going forward they will also be acting as a delivery partner for the Association of Independent Museums in the delivery of their Connected Communities programme from 2023-25. HVG (website), HVG (annual report, pdf, 21 pgs)
The National Council for Voluntary Organisations has published ‘Time Well Spent 2023’ a survey of volunteers that helps gain a deeper understanding of the volunteering experience and motivations. Conducted during November and December 2022 it collected over 7,006 volunteer experiences. Key findings include:
A decline in formal volunteering with the impact of the pandemic in evidence, in particular raising money or taking part in sponsored events fell from 11% in 2019 to 6% in 2023.
Volunteering remotely is commonplace, almost a third volunteer online or over the phone, it is also more common with disabled people.
Volunteers who feel it is too much like unpaid work has increased from 19% to 26%.
Flexibility is highly valued by volunteers with the primary barrier to volunteering are those who do not want to commit to volunteering regularly.
The negative financial impact of volunteering for those worried about ‘being out of pocket’ has increased 5% in 2019 to 14% in 2023.
Kids in Museums name Family Friendly Museum Award shortlisted museums ahead of a summer of family judging
Kids in Museums have named the 18 shortlisted museums from 600 nominations for over 110 different museums. Over the next two months families will go undercover as judges to decide on the eventual winners. Families are encouraged to sign up to become judges. NMDC members shortlisted include for ‘Best Large Museum’ – Horniman Museum and Gardens, Museum of Liverpool and National Maritime Museum, London. ‘Best Medium Museum’ – Great North Museum: Hancock is in a category that includes Art Fund Museum of the Year shortlisted the MAC, Belfast. ‘Best Small Museum’ - includes Royal Cornwall Museum, part of the Cornwall Museums Partnership. The three shortlisted museums for the new category of ‘Best Youth Project – Climate’ include Falmouth Art Gallery, London Transport Museum and Tullie in Carlisle. The winners will be announced in October. Kids in Museums (shortlist), Kids in Museums (family judges sign up)
Nominations open for Museums Change Lives Award for 2023
The Museums Association’s Museums Change Lives Award recognises and celebrates outstanding practice by UK museums delivering social impact. Three awards are presented to institutions for – Best Museums Change Lives Project, Best Small Museum Project and Decolonising Museums Award. There is also an individual category for – Radical Changemaker Award. The deadline for entries is 22 August 2023. Museums Association
Touring Exhibitions Group – Preparing to Borrow workshops
Free online ‘Preparing to Borrow’ workshops support borrowing objects from UK museums and galleries, helping participants acquire the knowledge and confidence to borrow tackling topics like insurance, fees and transportation. There are two online sessions Wed 12 July 1-4pm and Wed 19 July 1-4pm. TEG
Also: TEG Members survey and chance to win a year’s free TEG membership. Deadline 14 July. TEG
This year’s International Arts and Antiquities Security Forum conference will be on the theme of ‘Protecting cultural venues during uncertain times’ in County Durham from 11-13 September. Discussing the threat from social, economic and environmental uncertainties, sessions will cover existing and emerging threats, protective risk management approaches and insurance. The full conference programme is available on their website. IAASF (Eventbrite), IAASF (conference programme)
Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums are hosting a symposium for health and social care professionals to promote the use of the museum and gallery activities as health interventions to meet health care needs. The symposium is on the 13 September with early bird tickets (£30) on sale till 16 July. TWAM
The 2023 GEM Conference running from 13-15 September at Chatham Historic Dockyard in Kent has announced a number of keynote speeches including; Gary Young, Professor, journalist and broadcaster on migration and Windrush, Emmie Kell from Arts Council England on museums at the heart of ACE’s Let’s Create strategy and Stuart McLeod from the Heritage Lottery on their new Heritage 2033 strategy and the importance of inclusion. They are also offering an on-line only ticket price for those who can’t attend in person. GEM (conference programme), GEM (booking page)
On the 5th October the Collections Trust will be running their on-line 2023 conference from 10.30-4pm. Titled ‘It’s good to share’, the focus will be on the benefits of sharing collections data. A mix of presentations, case studies and discussions will look at the new Museum Data Service and the benefits of sharing collections data in terms of rethinking cataloguing. The event will be recorded and available for catch-up for ticket holders. They will also be offering 100 free inclusive places. Collections Trust, inclusive places eligibility
ENCATC, the European network on cultural management and policy, will be holding their 2023 congress in Finland. Running from 11-13 October in Helsinki, the theme will be ‘Artificial Intelligence embraced: The future of the culture and creative sector’. The congress will explore the profound impact that AI is having on cultural policy, management, education, and research. Early bird offer for tickets runs to 15 August. The programme is aimed at culture professionals, policy makers, researchers, artists and students. ENCATC
Association for Heritage Interpretation (AHI) Conference 2023
Running from 11-13 October, the AHI Conference will be in Lincoln for 2023 with a theme of exploring balance, equity and the environment – changing the climate of natural and cultural interpretation. This year the conference will be exploring how heritage interpretation adds value to the key issues of our times - biodiversity, environmental sustainability, social inclusion and urban regeneration. AHI
The National of European Museum Organisations have announced their 2023 conference – ACTION! Museums in the climate crisis, will take place from 19-21 November in Lahti, Finland. The conference will explore how museums can take action for the climate and a sustainable future. The full programme is yet to be finalised but will include opportunities for networking and museum visits. NEMO
Black Cultural Archives will be holding their fourth BCA Pathways: Creating Space event, in the form of a series of masterclasses centred on the theme of ‘Creating Space’. This is an event for those from Black and global majority backgrounds, which seeks to redress the underrepresentation of them in arts and heritage, by illuminating routes into and roles within the sector. This year's workshops will focus on equipping individuals with the skills needed to make space for themselves, in an industry where they are underrepresented and the increase in portfolio careers and technological advances such as Chat GPT has caused widespread fear.
Masterclasses on topics such as Freelancing, Archival Practice and Curation will be delivered in person by industry experts at Black Cultural Archives, during w/c 25th September 2023. Tickets are free and can be booked here. BCA Pathways
Susannah Storey has been appointed as new Permanent Secretary at the Department for Culture Media and Sport. Storey is currently a Director General at the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT). She will support Lucy Frazer MP and her ministerial team and be responsible for the leadership of the department. Gov.uk (profile), Gov.uk (press release)
Jennifer Francis has been appointed as Director of External Affairs at the Museum of London, she will head up the External Affairs Directorate including the museum’s Communications, Digital Innovation and Development teams, as well as driving brand awareness, public support and audience engagement. Francis was previously Director of Brand and Marketing at Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey, she is also a trustee of Ironbridge Gorge Museums Trust. Museum of London
The Association of Cultural Enterprises has appointed Gordon Morrison as Chief Executive Officer. Morrison replaces Jill Fenwick from early September. He has 20 years experience in the sector and has spent the last five years as CEO of the Association of Scottish Visitor Attractions. ACE
Emma Ridgway has joined London’s Foundling Museum as their new Director after Caro Howell’s move to the Imperial War Museum as Director-General. Ridgeway is currently Chief Curator, Head of Exhibitions and Learning, at Modern Art Oxford. M+H Advisor
Mark Bills, Director of Gainsborough’s House in Suffolk, is to step down in August after more than a decade in the role. Museums Association, M+H Advisor
Honours – a number of people working in museums and heritage have received King’s Birthday honours:
Duncan Henry Wilson, Chief Executive of Historic England, was appointed CBE, for services to heritage. John Barnes, the Chief Executive of Historic Royal Palaces, was awarded an OBE for services to heritage.
MBEs were awarded to Rachel Tranter-Needham, Director of the Group for Education in Museums (GEM), Roy Martin, a Volunteer Engineering Co-ordinator at the RAF Museum and Chair of The Aerospace Museum Society, William Brown, a former National Security Adviser to Arts Council England, John Reid, Chair of Trustees at Trimontium Museum, Robert Frank Bonner, Curator at Greater Manchester Fire Service Museum Trust, Susan Giles, Senior Curator at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, and Deborah Boden, World Heritage Site Coordinator, at Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape World Heritage Site. BBC, Gov.uk (full list), M+H (museum and heritage)
UK’s best free museums – Which? Magazine published a survey of the Best UK days out for free with a top 10 list of free museums and galleries. St Fagans National Museum of History in Cardiff came out on top, the rest of the top 10 were made up of a number of NMDC members. Which?, Museums Association, i news
Previously free, some UK museums are starting to charge as cost of living crisis bites, 13 June, Art Newspaper (£)
Arson attack on Avoncroft Museum in Bromsgrove, home to over 30 historic buildings and structures. In June they reported a fire started by ‘vandals’ that destroyed a thatched roof barn used for educational workshops, 10 June, BBC