Representatives of UK museums, sector bodies and funders took part in a ‘UK Museum COP’ event at Tate Modern on 31st October organised by the NMDC. The event secured consensus from museum leaders on collective action to decarbonise the sector and mitigate the impacts of the climate and biodiversity crises.
Attendees agreed a joint commitment to action presented by Nick Merriman, Chief Executive, Horniman Museum and Gardens and Chair of the COP event:
“In looking after collections for future generations, museums are amongst a small group of institutions of the long-term, mandated to take a perspective beyond the short term cycles of politics and economics. Given this, leaders of UK museums feel a responsibility to speak out about the current climate and biodiversity crisis and call upon UK politicians and businesses to accelerate action to mitigate this crisis before it is too late. We are already around or beyond crucial tipping points: global temperatures are higher than they have ever been since humans emerged as a species, and extinctions are occurring at around a thousand times the normal rate. There is an existential threat to the world we have become accustomed to.
Many museums have collections relating to the Earth’s five previous mass extinction events, and we are now in the midst of the sixth, the Anthropocene. UK museum leaders feel they have an ethical obligation to take action to alleviate that damage. Museums will:
Use relevant collections, programmes and exhibitions to engage audiences with the climate crisis and inspire them to take positive action.
Introduce more sustainable collections management including using disposal more actively.
Develop and implement decarbonisation plans which include relaxing carbon-hungry environmental parameters.
Undertake measures to mitigate the impacts of extreme weather and adapt to new challenges.
Increase biodiversity in our green spaces.
Like all organisations across the country, museums need assistance with decarbonisation, mitigation and adaptation. We call upon business, funders, current and future governments to facilitate this, and to maintain and deliver on commitments to achieve net zero carbon emissions and protect our natural environment.”
Taking the COP (‘Conference of the Parties’) model the event was the culmination of work by a series of sub-groups, each tasked with considering a different key issue for museums and proposing actions to increase momentum in tackling barriers to sustainability. Key recommendations made on the day included:
Urgent changes to planning legislation and guidance, and increased investment to ensure the sustainability of heritage buildings.
Development of a new central resource for museums linking to current advice and guidance on sustainability, including clear signposting to appropriate resources for different types of organisations.
Sustainability to be incorporated into Learning and Development programmes and recruitment, plus development of a mentoring scheme to share knowledge across the sector and a cross-organisational training programme to be rolled out in 2024.
Inclusion of environmental sustainability in key routes into the sector such as Museums and Heritage studies and apprenticeships.
Carbon Literacy Training to be sustained, expanded, and strategically funded.
All museums to adopt a ‘greener option first’ principle in all areas of their practice, including more intelligent and lower-energy environmental conditions for collections, and more sustainable exhibition design and transportation of objects.
NMDC Chair and Director, Tate, Maria Balshaw said: “The NMDC was delighted to convene the first UK Museum COP at Tate Modern this week to agree actions museums and galleries can and should take to address the climate and ecological crisis. Museums and galleries have a unique perspective as institutions that have to take a long-term view with their mission to preserve collections and stories for the long future. The conference agreed a series of vital actions to reduce the environmental impact of museums and show how they can inspire positive action for our public.” NMDC, Guardian
Flooding causes significant damage to the Museum of Making
Storm Babet caused ‘significant damage’ to the Museum of Making in Derbyshire with water levels higher than expected at 50-70cm. The museum opened in May 2021 following a multimillion pound transformation and was shortlisted for Art Fund’s Museum of Year in 2022. Although the building was designed to withstand an element of flooding with movable displays on the ground floor and installation of electrics above the ground, the museum said there appeared to be damage to equipment in the kitchen, workshop and interior ground floor doors. Tony Butler, Executive Director of Derby Museums Trust, said the collections appeared undamaged, and the museum launched a fundraising campaign on Saturday 21 October to mitigate the impact of the damage and loss of income during closure in the run up to a busy Christmas period. Derby Museums, Fundraiser, M+H Advisor, Art Newspaper (£)
National Galleries Scotland appoint first female director in 173 years
Anne Lyden has been named as the successor to Sir John Leighton who steps down after 17 years in the role. Lyden, previously worked for 18 years at the J. Paul Getty Museum and has been a photography curator at NGS since 2013, she is currently Interim Co-Director of Collection and Research. She will take up the role of Director-General from the 1 January 2024 and will oversee the National, Portrait, Modern One and Modern Two galleries. On taking up the appointment Lyden said: "Having worked with the national collection and a wide range of colleagues over the last 10 years, I am delighted to continue this experience of making art accessible to everyone." NGS, BBC
Also: NGS receives planning approval for transformational North Edinburgh development. NGS, National, M+H Advisor. Also: Scotland’s national galleries have ‘long way to go’ to be inclusive, says outgoing chief, Guardian
The Museum of London marked a key milestone in plans to open a new ‘London Museum’ at Smithfield Market in 2026. The foundation stone was unveiled at a ceremony at the Smithfield site to mark the start of principal construction works by Director, Sharon Ament and Justine Simmons, Deputy Mayor for Culture and the Creative Industries, Greater London Authority. The museum also announced a new £5 million donation from the National Lottery Heritage Fund which brings their total contribution to £10 million. Museum of London, Evening Standard
Beamish Museum opens miners cottage to support dementia work
The 1950s aged mineworker’s homes will provide a space for innovative work with people living with dementia and other long-term health conditions. The new facilities, known as Clover Cottage, will allow the team at Beamish to expand their reach and two remaining homes in the terrace will be open to the public to show what life was like for retired miners in the 1950s. The cottages are part of the ‘Remaking Beamish’ project which is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Beamish, BBC
Black Country Living Museum Infant Welfare Centre opens to the public
The replica 1960s Lea Road Infant Welfare Centre celebrates 75 years of the NHS and the contribution of the Caribbean and Windrush generations through well researched characters and stories from the period. Director of Programmes Carol King said: “Particularly in the 60s, there was a real labour shortage and it was people from the Caribbean and the Windrush generations that came over and brought their skills and have looked after us for generations, so we felt it was really important to highlight that contribution.” BCLM, Guardian
‘Delivering Across Scotland: 2023-2027’ has a focus on increasing engagement with the national collection and supporting collections knowledge and skills with their fifth national strategy. In response to consultation there were strong and consistent requests for collections training, lending and acquisition funding programmes, leading initiatives and being an advocate for the importance of investment in collections care, management and access. NMS
Images this month come from Imperial War Museums and mark the opening of their Blavatnik Art, Film and Photography Galleries which open on the 10 November in London. The permanent gallery will display around 500 items from their collections and explore how artists, photographers and filmmakers bear witness to, document and tell the story of war and conflict for future generations. IWM, M+H Advisor
Arts Council England had published a review of environmental conditions under the Government Indemnity Scheme (GIS), which replaces the need for commercial insurance for cultural venues. The review identified three areas for further exploration:
Internationally, more organisations are managing the temperature, relative humidity and light risks to collections on a case-by-case basis depending on the context of the exhibitions and objects.
The greatest energy use (with associated carbon emissions) in GIS display and storage is caused by mechanical control of relative humidity and temperature.
The flexibility for appropriate RH, temperature, lux levels for different objects is not widely understood.
Immediate actions by ACE in response to the review include clarifying the existing flexibility for relative humidity, temperature and light conditions within the Scheme in order to help organisations make choices about reducing their carbon emissions. ACE will also:
Consult with the sector on the practicalities, benefits or unintended consequences of replacing the current RH, temperature bands and lux levels.
Simplify and clarify the Guidelines.
Ensure the application form is consistent with these and doesn’t ask for additional information.
Separate out developmental collections care advice and support from the requirements of the GIS scheme.
A new survey to canvas the sector's views on temperature and relative humidity bands and light levels is now open. Findings will help make sure that the Scheme benefits museums, balances the needs of its different stakeholders and continues to make a vital contribution to communities across the UK. The deadline for submissions is 19 November 2023. ACE, GIS survey
Shadow culture secretary outlines National Culture Infrastructure Plan
At the Labour Party Conference on the 9 October, Labour Shadow Culture Secretary, Thangam Debbonaire, outlined plans for ‘Space to Create’, a National Culture Infrastructure Plan, if Labour were to win the next general election. She also mentioned the importance of a creative curriculum. Thangam Debbonaire (conference speech), Art Newspaper (£), Arts Professional (£)
In September 2023 the AIM State of the Sector Survey was sent out, analysing 250 responses from across the sector highlighted a number of challenges including high energy bills, the lingering effects of Covid on visitor numbers and the current state of public funding. Headline data includes-
72% of museums feel able to cope with cost pressures, although 44% said this is only in the short term.
30% of museums had a significantly worse summer than expected.
Strongest support needs echo those pre-pandemic: capital funding for maintenance (44%) and transformation projects (39%).
There is a clear demand for MEND, or nation equivalent funds to continue.
20% of museums need support in accessing funding that is already available.
In September 2023 270 UK Heritage Pulse panel members responded to a short survey on how the summer season had been for their organisation. A mixed picture emerged on organisational resilience with responses show a lack of confidence over adapting to financial challenges, planning for the future and recruitment. There was a significant increase in expenditure with increases in payroll and energy costs. 52% saw some increase in their total visits over the summer and 53% had increase in demand for education and community activities. Heritage Pulse
Also: Heritage Alliance ‘Innovation: Explore’ report on unlocking business support for the heritage sector. The report has some useful insights into accessing business support information, alongside regional and national approaches to different business support skills and whether bespoke heritage skills are required for different services. Heritage Alliance (report, pdf, 12 pgs)
COP28 to open in the United Arab Emirates from 30 Nov – 12 Dec
Julie’s Bicycle, will be co-leading on the Arts, Culture, Antiquities & Heritage theme of the Resilience Hub at COP28 alongside Hivos. You can sign up for the virtual platform now and follow on ‘X’ @copreshub, Resilience Hub, programme
Activists arrest after protests at the Natural History Museum
Two Just Stop Oil protestors were arrested on Thursday 26 October after throwing orange powder on a replica dinosaur skeleton at the Natural History Museum’s Titanosaur exhibition. The museum was temporarily closed, the skeleton on loan from Museo Paleontológico Egidio Feruglio in Argentina did not sustain any long term damage. Telegraph, M+H Advisor
Our Broken Planet: Community of Practice from the Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum is bringing together museum practitioners from across the UK interested in developing exhibitions and programming in response to the planetary emergency. The programme focuses on 2-years of knowledge exchange and collaboration – Year One Sept 2023-May 2024 involves bite-size talks, in-person network events and funding pots. Year Two June 2024-May 2025 will foster collaboration on the development of regional displays. NHM
To coincide with COP28, Wales Climate Week will run a virtual conference over 5 days between 4-8 December designed to bring together a range of climate stakeholders to consider national government strategies and regional and local delivery solutions. Wales.gov
Webinar from VisitEngland - save money and cut carbon emissions
For tourism and hospitality businesses, this webinar will share tips on saving money and cutting carbon emissions. Experts in energy procurement and billing, energy saving and renewables installation will give guidance and takes questions. Tuesday 14 November 2023 11am – 12.30pm. VisitEngland
European report on culture driving green transition and facing the energy crisis
Voices of Culture funded by the European Commission has published the Brainstorming Report ‘Culture and Creative Sectors and Industries (CCSI) driving Green Transition and facing the Energy Crisis’. It looks at how to integrate the power of CCSI into addressing and containing climate change. It also explores the dual impact of culture on climate as an energy intensive industry. NEMO (website), Voices of Culture (website), Voices of Culture (report, pdf, 33 pgs)
Also: Roots and Branches: Seeds for Action Programme. The Museum Development Network funded by Arts Council England are offering a number of sessions for those who have already undertaken Carbon Literate Certification to connect and expand their work. Sessions cover connecting and co-working, engaging people with climate, train the trainer, sustainable retail and collections care. Museum Development
£13million distributed as part of the government’s Know Your Neighbourhood Fund
The fund worth up to £30m is tackling loneliness in 27 disadvantaged areas across England, distributed by Arts Council England, UK Community Foundations and Historic England. The ACE partners delivering nearly £3m in funds include the Association of Independent Museums, Libraries Connected and Creative Lives. As part of the funding AIM have announced the initial ‘Connected Communities’ first round recipients:
Peckover House and Gardens – working with people with dementia
Barnsley and Doncaster – tackling chronic loneliness
Bowes Museum – engaging disadvantaged young people
Wolverhampton Arts and Culture – strengthening families hubs
Powell-Cotton Trust – creating volunteering roles for people with disabilities and mental health conditions. Gov.uk, AIM
Also: Applications are now open for the second round of AIM’s ‘Connected Communities’ grants. To be eligible museums and partnerships or consortia must include a museum in one of the 27 selected areas. Open to accredited and non-accredited museums, you do not need to be an AIM member. Grants range from £15,000 to £100,000 delivering projects that improve community connections through high quality volunteering opportunities and/or reducing loneliness and increasing social bonds. Deadline for expressions of interest 12 noon Monday 27 November with full applications by 12 noon Monday 15 January 2024. AIM
ACE extends Creative People and Places National Portfolio Programme
Arts Council England have extended their 2022-2025 programme by one year to 31 March 2026 in response to the challenges facing organisations post Covid. The extension is intended to provide security and stability to existing CPPs and give more time to develop plans for those interested in applying to the next portfolio. The planned 2025-2028 Creative People and Places National Portfolio process will also be postponed for one year. All current CPPs are eligible for the extension but will need to complete a simple application process. ACE
The new Creative Industries investment fund is to support the UK government’s ambition to grow the sector by £50 billion. The £35m Creative Growth Finance II (CGF II) fund will provide the investment needed to meet the targets set in the recent Sector Vision. Tridos
Prioritising museums at risk of closure, losing vital skills and knowledge, or unable to provide effective collection care, the scheme has a special focus on small museums and others that have found it difficult to access support. The fund will support education, training, curation and exhibition projects that address collections care and sustainability of historic or decorative arts collections. Applicants must be AIM members but do not need to be accredited. The scheme is open to local authority and independent museums that are registered charities. Grants range from £1,500 to £8,000. Application deadline is Friday 8 December 2023. AIM
Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy offers ‘Networks Funding’
Offering core financial support to fundraising groups and networks across England, the funding will contribute to the development of new training events, conferences, seminars and meetings with the aim of strengthening arts fundraising skills and building robust partnerships. The fund can support virtual or in-person events with activities taking place between December 2023 and March 2024. Up to a maximum of £2,500 for any single event or group of events benefitting a community of people or up to £1,000 for an entirely virtual event. The deadline for applications is 12 noon on 24 November 2023. Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy
AHRC funding for arts and humanities research projects with German partners
The Arts and Humanities Research Council alongside co-funder the German Research Foundation are looking to fund two highly integrated national teams based in the UK and Germany. The full economic cost of the project can be up to £420,000 and can last between 24-36 months. AHRC will fund 80% of the full economic cost. It is expected that 18 awards will be made under this funding opportunity. The deadline is 20 February 2023. UKRI
Also: Coastal Communities Fund: round 5 progress report (England) – this report covers 47 projects that received funding between 2018 and 2021 with 25% of funding going to tourism projects. Featured case studies include the Blackpool Museum Project and the National Maritime Museum Cornwall Heritage boat tours. Gov.uk, gov.uk (report, pdf, 81 pgs)
Also: Cross-Border Cooperation for Museums Toolkit – this useful resource looks at developing an idea, looking for funds and writing a proposal as well as best practice. It also includes a number of EU funded case studies which mention the involvement of a number of UK partners. NEMO (pdf, 74 pages)
British Museum speaks at Culture, Media and Sport Committee on theft of items
George Osborne, Chair of the British Museum and Interim Director, Sir Mark Jones, spoke at a House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee meeting answering questions on the theft of items from the museum and the resignation of Hartwig Fischer. Osbourne responded with news of improved security procedures, new policies on whistleblowing and plans to digitise more of the museum collection. Maria Balshaw, Chair of NMDC and Lord Parkinson, Minister for Arts and Heritage, also answered questions on sector approaches to cataloguing collections and instances of theft. Parliament.tv, Guardian, M+H Advisor, Art Newspaper (£)
Following on from the British Museum story a number of other museums have featured in stories about missing objects following freedom of information requests. The BBC reported on nearly 2,000 objects missing from Wales’ national museums and the Daily Mail reported on missing items at the Imperial War Museum and Natural History Museum. The Museums Association responded about the misleading nature of the coverage. The Times and the BBC also reported on Glasgow Museum and the location of a sculpture by Auguste Rodin.
Also: The Collections Trust have an ‘Accountability for collections – Inventory’ online training session on 11 January 10-12pm which will look at the minimum level of information required to ensure accountability for your collections. There will be opportunities to ask questions in the session. Collections Trust
Latest treasure finds figures show highest reported finds since records began
The latest figures from Portable Antiquities Scheme show 1,072 reported treasure finds for 2021 across England, Wales and Northern Ireland and provisional figures for 2022 show 1,378 treasure finds, the highest recorded number since records began in 1996. In 2021 of the 1,072 finds, 20% were coins and 80% were objects, 96% were discovered by metal detecting. Roughly a quarter of objects (26%) and a quarter of coins (24%) were acquired or donated to museums, totalling 270 additions to museums. Of these finds, the three largest acquisitions were made by the Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery (20 cases), the British Museum, and the Lincoln Museum (10 cases for both). Gov.uk, Independent
Repatriation, contested heritage and heritage at risk
Responses to government’s ‘Retain and Explain’ guidance
Following on from the publication of government guidance on the 5 October there have been a number of articles and debate focussing on the suggestions for dealing with contested heritage. The Museum Association summarised responses from the National Trust and National Lottery Heritage fund alongside comments by the historian David Olusoga from an interview on BBC Radio 4. The Art Newspaper also quoted former Conservative arts minister, Ed Vaizey, who said; “I think this [the strategy] is broadly sensible. The number of contentious objects is growing so it is a good idea to issue guidance. But it is undermined by a blanket refusal to countenance removal, when removal or relocation could be a sensible outcome of any discussion.” An article in The Conversation explored why the guidance is flawed and we should always question our monuments. Gov.uk
Pitt Rivers and Oxford University Museum of Natural History return ancestral remains to Aboriginal communities
The decision to return the remains is part of an agreement to repatriate 30 ancestors in total. The initial ceremony handed over the remains of 11 Aboriginal ancestors with 5 returning to their respective communities and 6 to the stewardship of the Australian government. OUMNH, Museums Association
The Royal College of Surgeons’ Hunterian Museum in London has removed access to the remains of a Bambuti baby, although not on public display the museum said it was viewable for medical research. The museum took the decision after a complaint from Booker prize shortlisted author, Nadifa Mohamed, who is also presenting a Channel 4 documentary on ‘human zoos’ in Britain. Guardian
Also: American Museum of Natural History removes all human remains from display, Museums Association
Craven Museum named as Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum of 2023
The winner of Best Accessible Museum – Craven Museum went on to be named as the overall winner of the Family Friendly Museum Award. Based in Skipton Town Hall it reopened in June 2021 following a £4.7m redevelopment. Including a Changing Places Toilet, Dementia friendly signage and relaxed session for autistic visitors, the family judges praised friendly staff and accessible galleries and activities. Winners in the other categories were:
Best Small Museum – Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro
Best Medium Museum – The Beaney House of Art & Knowledge, Canterbury
Also: European Heritage Award Winners 2023, winners of the 5 Grand Prix prizes and €10,000 included the Museum of Literature Ireland. The Public Choice Award went to Transilvanica in Romania which has established Romania’s longest hiking trail. Other UK winners included Cleveland Pools in Bath (conservation and adaptive reuse) and MINIARE: The Art & Science of Manuscript Heritage in Cambridge (research). Europa Nostra
Also: Esther Fox, Head of Curating for Change, which supports disability history exhibitions and events, wins National Lottery Heritage Award for heritage projects. NLHF, Curating for Change
Also: Blooloop 50 Museum Influencer List announced including Helen Charman, Director Learning and National Programmes, V&A and Michelle McGrath, Founder, Museum as Muck. Blooloop
The Collections Trust Award highlights the often-unsung achievements of those who manage the collections that lie at the heart of all museums. This year’s theme is ‘celebrating collections management’. Submissions can be linked to any of Collections Trust’s recent campaigns, including banish the backlog,rethinking cataloguing, or it’s good to share. Winners receive £1,000 to spend on agreed collections management activity. Deadline is 9am on 15 January 2024. Collections Trust
The Civic AI Observatory proposes organisational policies for dealing with AI
In their latest newsletter, Civic AI Observatory, a partnership between Nesta and Newspeak House, provided a useful look at the types of organisational policies needed in dealing with the uncertainty around Artificial Intelligence. It provides examples of internal policies for staff use, policies for procuring generative AI products and public statements about the organisation’s public use of AI. Newsletter, Newsletter (sign up)
Digital Heritage Leadership Briefing: Artificial Intelligence new resource and webinar
The National Lottery Heritage Fund are launching a new resource on 16 November, the ‘Digital Heritage Leadership Briefing: Artificial Intelligence’ is aimed at heritage sector leaders and those tasked with taking a strategic approach to digital investment and development. There will be a webinar to launch the resource written by Dr Mathilde Pavis on Thursday 16 November 11am-12pm open to anyone with an interest in AI. NLHF (resource from 16 Nov), NLHF (webinar)
VocalEyes are hosting the final event of their Heritage Access programme, the virtual event looks at the intricacies of designing, managing and elevating successful digital volunteering projects or programmes. The varied panel includes representatives from the Smithsonian, Westminster Abbey and Wikimedia. The event is on Thursday 23 November 9.45am-3pm and is free. VocalEyes
Also: A Twitter ‘paywall’ could be a surprising setback for the sector, M+H Advisor
Also: Does coverage of Sotheby’s Freddie Mercury sales show that auctions are perfect TikTok fodder?, Art Newspaper (£)
Research from Creative Access, the social enterprise, has found that 82% of respondents from under-represented individuals in the creative industries don’t apply for jobs because of financial barriers. The figure increased to 84% among those in broadcasting and 90% when considering working in the arts. More than half said financial barriers are a significant threat to their creative careers. The three most common financial barriers were commuting costs, unaffordable living costs and being without funds to relocate. Creative Access, Arts Professional
Creative Diversity research shows access to creative higher education remains unequal
The ‘Making the Creative Majority’ report has been published by the Creative Diversity All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) founded in 2019 by Ed Vaizey, MP. Their second report looks at ‘What Works’ to support diversity and inclusion in creative education and the talent pipeline, with a focus on the 16+ age category. It details the importance of creative education in subjects such as music, fine art, graphic design and games development for creative careers. It also shows what needs to change if creative education is to properly support an equitable, inclusive and diverse creative economy. This extends to undergraduate degrees and government efforts to support alternative qualifications and routes beyond higher education. Recommendations include –
Government revision of cultural and creative education provision.
Widening participation engaging a range of services including social care, CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Care Services) and creative economy employers.
Clarity for young people on the decision making process.
A number of recommendations around work-integrated learning provision covering apprenticeships and internships including the skills gap around designing, implementing, managing and evaluating effective work.
Independent review shows impact of pandemic on work experience in secondary schools and further education
An Ofsted ‘Independent review of careers guidance in schools and further education and skills providers’ published at the end of September commented on the provision and access to work experience post covid. “Overall, the negative impact of the pandemic on careers guidance, including work experience, has moderated. However, long-term changes in working practices, such as increased home working, mean that some employers have now stopped offering work experience. Schools and FE and skills providers are finding it difficult to find alternative placements. Some schools have still not restarted work experience after the pandemic.” Ofsted
A reminder to thank, celebrate and share the work of your trustees. The 2023 theme is ‘Many voices. Working together. With purpose’. The website shares trustee stories and provides downloadable social media logos to share on your channels. There are also a number of trustee events listed on the website. Trustees Week
Clore Leadership have produced a compendium of cultural research – The Clore Leadership/AHRC Online Research Library, which is a curated repository of research undertaken by Clore Research Fellows funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. It features over 70 papers spanning the last 20 years and reflects current trends in cultural leadership. Clore (press release), Clore (Library)
Arts Council England has launched a development programme which aims to strengthen governance in the creative and cultural sector. Aimed at chairs, trustees and senior leaders with a focus on strengthening governance, helping trustees understand their roles, managing organisational risk, supporting inclusive recruitment and exploring ideas around the future of governance. It will involve a programme of online workshops, live events, a peer network and access to online resources. Sign up to find out more. ACE
Also: Charity governance in urgent need of overhaul, 4 October 2023, Arts Professional
Clore Leadership are offering ‘Discover: Your Leadership’, a 4-week online introductory course to gain insight into who you are as a leader and how to develop your leadership skills. The course starts w/c 15 January 2024. The cost is £50+VAT and the deadline for applications is Monday 15 January. Clore Leadership
Cultural Governance Forum with the Charity Commission
This in-person networking and breakfast event from Clore Leadership and the Cultural Governance Alliance at the British Library Knowledge Centre is with Orlando Fraser, Chair of the Charity Commission and Baroness Lola Young of Hornsey. The session will explore topics including governance, board/trustee accountability, politics of good governance and restitution and regulation. Tickets cost £25+VAT. The event is on Wednesday 6 December from 8.30-10.30am. Clore Leadership
Museums are invited to sign up to participate in Museum Shop Sunday on 27 November with an event or promotion. Organised by the Association of Cultural Enterprises, the day highlights the role of retail in helping arts, heritage and cultural venues to flourish and aims particularly to promote original goods. The website also offers ideas of how to get involved and a marketing toolkit. You can also follow #MuseumShopSunday on ‘X’ and Instagram. Association of Cultural Enterprises
The ICON Conference ‘Conservation for Change’ will be held on 2 and 3 July 2024 at the Royal Geographical Society in London. The key themes are – Impact and Performance, Partnerships and Collaboration, Engaging Your Audiences, Workforce Development and Future Resilience and Sustainability. Initial papers are sought with a maximum word count of 350 words. The deadline for submissions is Monday 27 November. ICON
The REMIX Summit is a global event on culture, tech and entrepreneurship running from 30-31 January at the Royal Academy of Arts and Here East (Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park). Topics for 2024 include the future of immersive experiences, creative ecosystems, frontiers in art/tech, consumer trends, multi-disciplinary collaborations and reimagining creative experiences. Early Bird tickets for both days cost £345+VAT and digital tickets cost £180+VAT. REMIX
Trident Manor Training Academy have a CPD certified online training session focussing on protecting cultural venues. Topics include understanding adversarial threats, attack methodologies, situational awareness, surveillance detection and effective operational practice. The cost is £60 and the online training runs on Thursday 23 November 1-5pm. Trident Manor
VisitEngland Accessible and Inclusive Toolkit for Business
Aimed at micro, small and medium-sized tourism businesses wanting to embark on, or continue, their accessibility journey. The toolkit explores what accessibility is and has sections on an inclusive welcome, accessible features and facilities, marketing and recruitment. VisitEngland
House of Memories Cymru dementia scheme launches in Wales
Part of the award winning House of Memories initiative created by National Museums Liverpool, the new bilingual programme will see 14 museum partners work with families and care-givers to support people living with dementia. The programme uses an app which users can personalise with virtual objects which can stimulate conversation and memories. National Museums Liverpool, Museums Association, Book training (professionals), Book training (family and friends workshops)
On the 7 October the Faith Museum opened in County Durham in the Scotland Wing of Auckland Castle. Spanning 6,000 years of stories of faith in Britain it features over 250 objects from public and private collections. Part of a wider Auckland Project, the museum was supported through a £12.4m grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, alongside other funders. Faith Museum, Museums Association, Guardian, Art Newspaper (£)
The Vagina Museum, which was forced to move from its east London premises in February, is set to open in a new bigger location on 4 November 2023 in Poyser Street, Bethnal Green. The museum exceeded its £85,000 fundraising target with donations from more than 2,500 people. The new museum will have three galleries including a temporary exhibitions space, the opening exhibition is on endometriosis. There will also be a café and the museum will host events and performances. Vagina Museum, Guardian, M+H Advisor
The £242m building on the site of the former Granada television studios is the UK’s biggest investment in a cultural project since Tate Modern in 2000. Originally named Factory International, insurance company Aviva were given naming rights for £35m. Four years late and £130m over budget the arts venue hosted a Yayoi Kusama art exhibition early in the year and officially opened with an immersive dance production directed by Danny Boyle and based on the film franchise ‘The Matrix’. The 13,350-square-metre building has flexible performance space with a capacity for up to 5,000 people standing. Aviva Studios, Museums Association, Guardian, Art Newspaper (£)
Middlesex University makes decision to close the Museum of Domestic Design and Architecture (MoDA)
The museum which has been closed to students and visitors since Sept 2023 will cease all operations by July 2024 after Middlesex University said they were no longer in a position to support the museum due to financial challenges. The collections at MoDA include 5,000 wallpaper samples and pattern books from Crown Wallpapers from the early 1950s to late 1960s and The Silver Studio Collection consisting of domestic interior textiles and wallpapers which is an Arts Council Designated collection. MoDA is seeking a new home for their collections, interested parties are requested to get in touch by emailing [email protected]MoDA, Museums Association
Nick Merriman appointed as Chief Executive at English Heritage
Chief Executive and Director of Content at Horniman Museum and Gardens, Nick Merriman, will join English Heritage in the New Year taking over from Kate Mavor who left in June 2023 after 8 years in the role. Merriman joined the Horniman Museum in 2018 and was previously Director of Manchester Museum. English Heritage, Museums Association, Times
Museum and Heritage Awards announce three new judges.
Keith Merrin, Director of Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, Sally Shaw, Director of Firstsite in Colchester and Deborah Smith, Director of the Arts Council Collection are joining the expert panel as Dame Diane Lees and Sam Mullins depart. The M+H Awards open for nominations from 1 November 2023. M+H Advisor
Wellcome appoints Dr John-Arne Røttingen as Chief Executive Officer, he is currently Ambassador for Global Health at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Norway. Røttingen will take up his role in January 2024 and succeeds Sir Jeremy Farrar who has headed up Wellcome since 2013. Wellcome