February 2015

NMDC newsletter: February 2015
 
    nmdc  
 
 
  NMDC newsletter: February 2015
 
 
 
 
  In this month's edition:  
 
 
  Working Internationally 2015

British Council offers museums and international tourism workshop

British Library seeks to raise £40m as it launches vision to 2023

HLF and Dundee Council award £14.5m to V&A Dundee as costs increase

Tate St Ives to double in size in new regeneration project

Libor fines fund NMRN battleship

Beamish doubles visitor figures in five years

Welsh Arts organisations ‘must wean themselves off public funding’

Sainsbury family are biggest museum philanthropists

“We cannot fund non-existent organisations”, says Agatha Christie’s grandson

Tourists visit the regions: Visit Britain says there was a record spend in 2014

Smithsonian considers first international outpost in ‘Olympicopolis’ in East London

Core Cities UK seek more profile and contact with DCMS

The future of local authority museums

Daniel Fujiwara tracks happy through appy

MPs work to reduce “greatest scale of looting since the Second World War”

£109m announced for children’s cultural education programme

Creative Employment Programme extends to 2016
 
 
 
  Section headings:  
 
 
  NMDC news  |  Members' news  |  Fundraising  |  New Arts Council England funds open to museums  |  Philanthropy  |  Economic growth through culture  |  Local museums and cuts  |  Events  |  Researching culture  |  Disability and access  |  Anniversaries  |  Appointments and Honours  |  Education, training and consultation  |  Employment  |  Until 2039  |  Exhibition highlights 2015, Part Two  |  Jobs  |  And finally... resurrecting an ancient library from ashes  
 
 
  NMDC news  
 
 
february_2015/5.-roresize-wlandson-(c)-ashmolean-museum,-university-of-oxford.jpg
 
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Images this month come from the Ashmolean's Great British Drawings exhibition which opens at the end of March.
 
Thomas Rowlandson (1756‒1827) The Corsican, his two friends and his blood hounds at the Window of the Thuilleries looking over Paris, 1815. Pen and brown ink and watercolour over graphite © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
 
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  Working Internationally 2015  
 
 
The full programme is now available for the Working Internationally Conference co-organised by NMDC, ICOM-UK and York Museums Trust. The Conference is on 5th March 2015 at The Hospitium in York. It is an opportunity for those involved in museums' international work to share information and good practice, discover new developments, and network.
 
The programme for 2015 has five themes:
 
  • International audiences: with a focus on inbound tourists.
  • International partnerships: working with India and Europe.
  • Practicalities of international work: managing the risks to objects, people, finances and reputation.
  • Putting funding packages together: case studies.
  • Recent developments: Arts Council England and international work.
 
The cost of the one-day conference is £35 per person including morning tea and coffee, lunch and a post-conference tour of the newly refurbished York Art Gallery. The programme and tickets, which are selling fast, are available online: http://2015workinginternationallyconference.eventbrite.co.uk
 
Also: The Working Internationally Regional Project is offering five travel bursaries of up to £200 each to support the cost of travelling to the 2015 Working Internationally Conference. Priority will be given to applications from regional non-Major Partner Museums and smaller museums who have participated in the WIRP Workshops in 2014/15.  An application form and guidelines are available on the ICOM UK website and the deadline for applications has been extended to 16th February 2015.  For further information, contact the WIRP Co-ordinator, Dana Andrew at [email protected] or 03330 143 875.  ICOM UK
 
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  British Council offers museums and international tourism workshop  
 
 
The British Council is offering a one day workshop for museums interested in attracting international tourists at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery on March 12th. The workshop will demystify international tourism and include speakers from ALVA, VisitBritain and Bristol Museums, who will present case studies from a wide range of museums. Tickets are £25.  Eventbrite (booking). The event is supported by NMDC.
 
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  Members' news  
 
 
  British Library seeks to raise £40m as it launches vision to 2023  
 
 
The British Library has launched a report Living Knowledge, which sets out the ambitious aims that it is working towards before its 50th birthday in 2023.  Chief Executive Roly Keating said, “the British Library is a visionary idea whose full potential is only just beginning to be realised as we fully enter the digital age.  The UK’s continuing success in a globalised world depends upon the freest possible flow of ideas, inspiration and information, and libraries – not just the national library, but the whole, inter-connecting network of public and academic libraries across the UK – are the vital enabler of that.” Plans include:
 
  • Raising £40m to digitally preserve the nation’s sound recordings, many of which are at risk because they are stored in technologically obsolete ways, or are fragile and subject to decay, as is the case with some of the earliest wax cylinder recordings and early records.
  • Extending BL’s Business & IP Centres to 20 UK city libraries.
  • Expanding existing work in support of business and education.
 
Telegraph, British Library, British Library (Living Knowledge pdf)
 
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  HLF and Dundee Council award £14.5m to V&A Dundee as costs increase  
 
 
Dundee City Council has given an extra £10m, and the HLF an additional £4.5m to the V&A’s new museum in Dundee, as costs increased from £45m to £80m.  The increase is because casting the building’s shell and exterior cladding will be much more expensive than originally projected.  However support from the Scottish national and local government is still strong. Leader of the Council, Ken Guilds, described the museum as a ‘crucial development’ that would bring jobs and wider economic benefit.  Carole Souter, Chief Executive of HLF said, “V&A Dundee will provide Scotland with a world-class museum of design while making a transformational contribution to the cultural, social and economic regeneration of the city”.  Further funds will be sought through private fundraising and the city’s capital programme. Work will begin on the museum site at the end of March and the building is expected to be finished by the end of 2017, and open to the public in June 2018. Its first touring exhibition, Design in Motion opens this month.  HLF, Museums Journal, BBC, Scottish Government
 
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  Tate St Ives to double in size in new regeneration project  
 
 
Tate St Ives is about to begin a major extension, which will include doubling the gallery space and creating new learning spaces and visitor facilities.  Opened in 1993, and intended for an estimated 70,000 visitors per year, the gallery now welcomes over 200,000.  It is estimated to bring £12m  annually to the region.  The Coastal Communities Fund has just contributed £3.87m to the project. Tate, The Cornishman
 
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  Libor fines fund NMRN battleship  
 
 
The Government has announced that the National Museum of the Royal Navy will receive part of a £1m fund, available through fines imposed in the banking sector following the Libor scandal.  The money will go towards restoring LCT 7074, the last Second World War landing craft in the UK.  Director Professor Dominic Tweddle said, “It has been announced on the Government website that we are in receipt of this funding and while we haven’t had official notification yet, it is very good news.”  NMRN, Guardian
 
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  Secrets of the tomb: after hours at the British Museum  
 
 
As the latest in the movie franchise Night at the Museum is released, the British Museum has produced a short video about the making of Secrets of the Tomb, which was filmed at the Museum. 200 crew, a 40 tonne crane, monkeys and horses were among the props brought into the Museum for the US blockbuster.  British Museum
 
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  Beamish doubles visitor figures in five years  
 
 
Beamish has announced visitor figures of 654,357 for 2014, an increase of 11% on the previous year, and twice as many visitors as five years ago.  It is now the most popular museum in the North East.  Director Richard Evans said, “more than half of all our guests are tourists on holiday – they stay in accommodation and go on to visit other attractions.  Thanks to the income we earn ourselves, we are now able to employ more than 350 people at Beamish in a diverse range of jobs from engineers to cooks.”  Beamish
 
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  Fundraising  
 
 
february_2015/resize18.-piper-(c)-the-piper-estate-+-dacs.jpg
 
John Piper (1903–92) The Abbey from the Churchyard, Arbroath, 1982 Brush and Indian ink with watercolour, bodycolour and coloured chalks on paper © The Piper Estate / DACS 201
 
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  The future of fundraising in an ageing society  
 
 
A new report The Future of Fundraising in an Ageing Society says that over 50s hold 80% of the nation’s wealth, and those over 60 make over half of all donations to the voluntary sector.  By 2033, nearly a quarter of the population will be over 65.  The report, published by the Commission on the Voluntary Sector and Ageing, has suggestions about how the might affect fundraisers.  Points include:
 
  • It is not a given that as the older population expands, it will remain as wealthy, especially as pensions shrink. Donors may become more discriminating about how they give.
  • Half of donors are also volunteers, with a deeper engagement with charities than simply giving.
  • A shift to one-off larger donations rather than a standard sum each month gift may be a challenge for charities trying to plan their core costs
  • There is enormous potential in legacy giving, which currently make up just 4% of all donations.  About 60% of people in the UK do not have a will.
 
CVSA
 
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  Export bar for earliest English translation of Erasmus  
 
 
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey has imposed an export bar on a newly discovered manuscript likely to be the earliest existing translation of Erasmus’ Enchiridion militis Christiani or ‘handbook of the Christian knight’.  Written in 1523, it has been in Alnwick Castle since at least the 19th century, but its significance was only recently understood. There is also the possibility that the translation is by William Tyndale. The export bar is in force until 13th April, with an extension to July if it is likely that the £242.5k asking price can be raised.  A sculpture by Bartolini is also currently under an export bar until 8th April.  Gov.uk, Gov.uk (Bartolini)
 
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  Tate reveals BP sponsorship figures  
 
 
After a hearing in front of the Information Tribunal, Tate has been forced to reveal its level of sponsorship by the oil company BP.  The sums averaged at £224k per annum between 1990 and 2006, a £3.8m total representing less than 0.5% of Tate’s income.  Rosa Curling, for the solicitors Leigh Day who fought the case said, “If public bodies are accepting sponsorship money from corporations such as BP, they must be open about how much they are receiving. Tate’s actions have prevented proper public debate over the acceptability of the sponsorship”.  However, writing for The Art Newspaper, social commentator Tiffany Jenkins said that BP is a “legitimate company and we all use oil” adding, “There are good reasons why the Tate and others should not have to reveal every penny of their financial arrangements: sponsorship deals are commercial.  As all fundraisers know, you ask for more than you get and this requires a certain degree of smoke and mirrors.”  Tate said that the sponsorship was commensurate with its ethics policy.  Art Newspaper (subscription only), Arts Professional, Guardian
 
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  Welsh Arts organisations ‘must wean themselves off public funding’  
 
 
Welsh Culture Minister Ken Skates has said that arts organisations must become less reliant on government funding. He said, “there’s now this transition point where arts and cultural organisations are increasingly, like other sectors, recognising that in order to be truly sustainable and thrive they must be less reliant on public funding. They must show a little more innovation in how they raise revenue.” He argued that there is now a “fantastic opportunity” to raise more money via internet crowdfunding.  He said that the Welsh Government is preparing a toolkit for organisations wishing to access alternative funding.  Arts funding by the Welsh Government has fallen by 10% since 2010, and Arts Council Wales is now poised for a major review of funding in 2015.  Arts Professional, Arts Council of Wales, Daily Post
 
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  New Arts Council England funds open to museums  
 
 
  Re:imagine India offers support for international collaboration  
 
 
The Re:imagine India fund is jointly supported by ACE and the British Council, and is open to UK museums and arts organisations wishing to take part in international collaborative work with the sub continent. The first deadline is 12th March and grants from £15 – 100k will be awarded.  Each project needs at least 10% match funding from another source. It is hoped that the projects will develop sustainable networks and partnerships between the two countries.  Arts Council
 
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  ACE International Showcasing Fund opens  
 
 
ACE’s International Showcasing Fund will run for the next three years and is aimed at market development – attracting overseas audiences to UK arts, museums and culture.  The 2015 deadline is noon on 9th February for expressions of interest, and 20th April for full applications. £50 – 300k is available per application, and each project must have at least 10% match funding from another source.  Arts Council
 
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  ACE Research Grant’s programme opens for 2015-16  
 
 
The Arts Council’s Research Grants programme has opened for 2015–16.  The programme seeks to build collective knowledge of the impact of the arts, and also build partnerships between the arts and researchers.  Around £700k is available to spend in the 2015–16 financial year, with each individual grant expected to be in the range of £50 – 100k.  The deadline for applications is 12th March at 5pm.  ACE, Arts Professional
 
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  Philanthropy  
 
 
  Sainsbury family are biggest museum philanthropists  
 
 
Research by The Art Newspaper shows that the Sainsbury family has been the largest donor to museums in recent times, giving £100m from 18 trusts in the past seven years.  The largest recipient has been the British Museum, with £25m towards its new wing, while the National Gallery received £10m to acquire two Titians. Other recipients included Tate Britain (£7.5m), the Ashmolean (£6.6m), Fitzwilliam (£6m), Wallace Collection (£5m) and the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts in Norwich (£6m).  Several members of the family have an interest in the visual arts, including Alex Sainsbury who set up a not-for-profit contemporary art gallery in Spitalfields in 2009.  He is about to become Chairman of the Whitechapel Gallery.  Art Newspaper (subscription only)
 
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  “We cannot fund non-existent organisations”, says Agatha Christie’s grandson  
 
 
Arts philanthropist Matthew Pritchard has criticised diminishing government funding for culture in Wales after Arts Council Wales warned groups not to rely on its grants.  Pritchard is a grandson of Agatha Christie, and donates royalties from some of her books to Welsh arts projects.  He said, “public funding is hugely important and nobody - no philanthropist, no private organisation, no trust - can support the arts unless it is on a strong basis of what the Arts Council in Wales and the Welsh government allocate. We cannot fund non-existent organisations, we cannot fund even organisations that are not able to employ really exciting talent, because otherwise there's no point." His trust is giving an extra £0.5m to the arts this year to mark the 125th year since Christie’s birth. BBC
 
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  Economic growth through culture  
 
 
february_2015/resize.-turner-(c)-ashmolean-museum,-university-of-oxford.jpg
 
Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775‒1851) Venice: The Rivadegli Schiavoni, 1840.  Brush and pen in watercolour © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
 
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  Creative Industries economic impact grew again in 2013  
 
 
Government figures show that the creative industries continued to grow in 2013, at a rate three times faster than the rest of the UK economy.  Figures show that:
 
  • The sector is now worth £76.9bn a year in GVA to the UK, or £8.8m an hour
  • This accounts for 5% of the UK economy
  • Creative Industries generated 1.71m jobs in 2013, 5.6 per cent of total UK jobs; and a 1.4 per cent increase on 2012.
  • Service exports between 2011-12 were averagely 2.8% across all UK industries, but were 11.3% in the creative industries
  • The design sector did particularly well, growing 25% over the last year
  • However some sectors have shrunk – publishing has lost 4.9% of jobs, and museums, galleries and libraries have lost 6% of jobs over the past three years.
 
Gov.uk, FT, Design Week
 
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  Tourists visit the regions: Visit Britain says there was a record spend in 2014  
 
 
VisitBritain has released figures for international tourist visits to the UK for the first nine months of 2014.  They show that foreign tourists are now more likely to visit the country beyond the capital.  Findings include:
 
  • There were new record spends in Wales (£303m), Scotland (£1.5bn), London (£8.9bn), East of England (£693m), North West (£849m) and the South East (£1.7bn).
  • There was a greater percentage increase in overseas tourism to Wales (14%), Scotland (12%) and Yorkshire (12%) than to London (6%).  Football and cycling events as well as President Obama’s visit to Newport may have been partly responsible.
  • Tourist spend from Chinese visitors is up 68%, with significant growth from Sweden, the USA, Australia and Germany.
  • Tourist spend in London at £8.9bn is equal to the highest figure on record. 
 
VisitBritain is poised to launch a £3m campaign encouraging more tourists to visit the UK countryside.  They are predicting 4.5% growth in tourism in 2015, generating more than £22bn.  Anniversaries from the Magna Carta and the Battle of Waterloo, to 125 years since the birth of Agatha Christie, will be highlighted in marketing. VisitBritain (2014 figures), VisitBritain (2015 predictions), Welsh government
 
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  Smithsonian considers first international outpost in ‘Olympicopolis’ in East London  
 
 
The Smithsonian Institute, which has 19 museums in the US and nine research facilities worldwide, is finalising an agreement to open its first international museum at a site in East London nicknamed ‘Olympicopolis’.  The V&A will also be opening a new venue at the site. London Mayor Boris Johnson and developers have already raised £33m for the Smithsonian museum.  Smithsonian Acting Secretary Al Horvath said, “We envision this as being a Smithsonian facility that really allows us to show the breadth and depth of everything that we do. So it won’t be specifically focused on one topic, but will allow us to run the gamut of things that we do — history, science, art, culture and the like.”  ALVA, Art Newspaper
 
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  Core Cities UK seek more profile and contact with DCMS  
 
 
A group representing the eight largest UK cities outside of the capital has commented on the Select Committee Report on the Arts Council of England.  The Core Cities group says the arts funding situation is now ‘critical’ and is seeking more support for the regions. 
 
  • They agree there is a funding bias in favour of London, exacerbated by the fact that the capital attracts more cultural philanthropy
  • The Core Cities jointly produce 27% of the nation’s economy, which is more than London, and therefore they argue these should be receiving the same amount of encouragement to develop benefit from culture
  • They would like greater direct contact with DCMS and ministerial teams, adding “we would welcome a dialogue with the minister concerning how to sustain a national cultural infrastructure in the face of unprecedented pressure on all our budgets.”
  • They argue that National Lottery funds should be distributed on a per capita basis, and possibly devolved to cities for spending, in addition to seeking new modes of funding culture including making better use of EU funds.
  • They emphasise that although some local authorities have not supported the arts, the Core Cities have extensively funded libraries, museums and theatres, and above the average spend by London local councils.
 
The eight cities in the group are Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Glasgow, Cardiff, Sheffield, Leeds, Newcastle, Liverpool, and Nottingham.  The Stage, Core Cities UK
 
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  Local museums and cuts  
 
 
  The future of local authority museums  
 
 
John Orna-Ornstein, Director of Museums at the Arts Council, has blogged his perspective on the future of local museums.  He says that reductions in local authority budgets are affecting hundreds of museums, but that the ‘picture isn’t all bad’.  “I’ve visited dozens of local authority museums in the last year, and been involved in conversations about many more. The great majority are optimistic about their futures. And some are faring relatively well financially, with grant income holding firm and increases in commercial revenue. I’ve also talked directly to the chief executives of local councils. Most are enormously supportive of their museums and wider cultural and arts offer, even where they have taken difficult decisions to reduce funding”.
 
Orna-Ornstein argues that there’s a greater emphasis on genuinely fulfilling local need: providing a better café than Starbucks, or an offer as attractive as the local cinema.  He says the Arts Council has relationships with ‘about two thirds’ of local authorities, and that these may be more significant in supporting the sector than the £40m which ACE puts into museums each year.  He urges local museums to invite both their local council and ACE to visit, and build relationships.  ACE
 
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  Wandsworth Museum plans merge with Battersea Arts Centre  
 
 
Wandsworth Museum is merging with Battersea Arts Centre (BAC) over the next year, with the organisations becoming one body in spring 2016.  Although the museum’s collections will remain on the old site, public exhibitions will reopen at BAC.  David Jubb, Artistic Director at BAC, said, “innovation and resilience are at the heart of what we do at Battersea Arts Centre. Recent projects like The Good Neighbour have brought together performance, heritage and our community to explore our shared values.  The possibilities for a new partnership with Wandsworth Museum are enticing and boundless, together we will be inspired by the past to help shape a better future”.  Wandsworth Museum was saved from closure in 2008 by a gift from philanthropist Michael Hintze. Wandsworth Museum, Museums Journal
 
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  Local councillor calls for Lowry sale as Derby Museums face cuts  
 
 
Derby City Council are exploring a proposal to reduce its funding of Derby Museums Trust by £314k  from the current level of £1.2m in 2015/16.  It is part of a larger plan to save £22m for the city.  The proposals would mean closing Pickford’s House and reducing opening hours at Derby Silk Mill and Derby Museum and Art Gallery, meaning redundancies.  During a debate on the issue, a councillor also called for the sale of the £1m Lowry painting Houses Near A Mill to pay for the city’s cultural offer. 
 
However, 6600 people have signed a petition against the plans, and in late January the Council said it was looking for ways to “not make cuts” to the service, acknowledging that “Derby Museums change lives”.  Director of Derby Museums Tony Butler said, “I’m pleased that the council have recognised the good work of the museums and given an indication that they would like to seek to reduce the cut.”  Derby TelegraphDerby City Council (budget consultation), Derby Telegraph, Museums Journal
 
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  Council plans to sell Bromley Museum’s 700 year old home  
 
 
Bromley Council is considering plans to sell Orpington Manor, the home of Bromley Museum.  Parts of the building are 700 years old, and it is the oldest structure in the borough.   Under the proposals, the museum’s collections would be redisplayed at the local library without staffing, and its 20,000 strong collection would be ‘rationalised’.  The Council argues that a recent survey shows the museum is ‘low priority’ for borough residents, and costs the Council £8 for each visit. The Council is seeking to make £60m savings across its operations over 4 years.  Last year the Council decided not to pursue an HLF grant to regenerate Orpington Manor and create a café space.  This Is Local London, Bromley Council
 
Also: Meanwhile Milton Keynes Gallery has been criticised by the Taxpayer’s Alliance as one of the least viable in the UK, after costing the local council £43 per visitor.  The gallery’s £259k per annum funding is secure, despite £22m cuts to the Council’s budgets.  Milton Keynes Citizen
 
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  People’s History Museum faces uncertain support after 2016  
 
 
In an address to the House of Lords, John Monks, Chairman of the People’s History Museum in Manchester, said the Museum had been ‘left out in the cold’ following the end of direct funding from DCMS.  DCMS explored relinquishing direct support for seven non-nationals in 2010: with the result that some, like Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums transferred to the Arts Council, while MOSI in Manchester joined the Science Museum Group.  The Geffrye and Horniman Museums continue to receive DCMS support.  Only the People’s History Museum is without long-term support, although a bridge grant from ACE of £100k will support it until April 2016.  Museums Journal
 
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  Events  
 
 
february_2015/resize3.-girtin-(c)-ashmolean-museum,-university-of-oxford.jpg
 
Thomas Girtin (1775‒1802) Dunottar Castle in a Thunderstorm, c. 1794.  Watercolour over indications in graphite © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
 
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  Developing a membership or friends scheme  
 
 
The Wales Council for Voluntary Action is offering a practical workshop for heritage organisations wishing to set up a membership or friends scheme.  It includes setting up a successful recruitment strategy, marketing life cycles and measuring results.  The workshop will be held twice: on 9th March at WCVA Rhyl, and 25th March at the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea.  Tickets are £10. The event is part of a series organised with Catalyst Cymru on heritage and fundraising, which is running until late March. WCVA, WCVA (Catalyst Cymru event menu)
 
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  The National Archives offers series of fundraising events for archive sector  
 
 
The National Archives is offering a series of events around their Giving Value project which helps the archive sector to fundraise. Core topics include financial preparedness and resilience, building a case for support for archives, and developing an effective fundraising plan.  Events are taking place from March to May in geographically diverse locations, including Edinburgh, Preston, Newcastle and Merthyr Tydfil.  Tickets are £20. National Archives
 
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  Museums Galleries Scotland hosts Digital Transformations Conference  
 
 
Museums Galleries Scotland is offering a free conference for museums, Digital Transformation: Supporting Culture Shift in MuseumsA full programme will be published in early February, and will feature speakers whose organisations are applying digital technology.  It is aimed particularly at those who want to develop a digital offer, but are not sure where to beginMGS, Eventbrite (booking)
 
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  Refloating the Ark: scientists, public and natural history museums  
 
 
A two day conference at Manchester Museum, Refloating the Ark, will look at how natural history collections can help generate public interest in the subject, and help scientific research and environmental monitoring.  Presentations will be from a variety of museologists and social anthropologists.  Tickets are £25 (one day)/ £40 (full conference).  Museums Development NW
 
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  Take your mamma out all night, twice a year  
 
 
Museums at Night has announced that their late night museum festival will now run twice a year.  The first event will be over four days, 13th – 16th May, and the second from 30th – 31st October.  The seven year-old festival has seen huge growth, and received 180,000 visits to 700 events in more than 500 venues across the country in 2014.  Arts Council England's John Orna-Ornstein said, “I sometimes think museums are at their best out of hours. Museums at Night brings the opportunity for people everywhere to engage with brilliant objects and museums close to their home in fun, quirky and stimulating ways.” Venues can register events for the May series with Culture24 until 13th February. Museums at Night, Museums at Night (how to register an event) Museums Journal
 
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  AIM annual conference: Hallmarks of a Prospering Museum  
 
 
The next AIM (Association of Independent Museums) annual conference, Hallmarks of a Prospering Museum, will be held from 18th – 20th June on Brunel’s SS Great Britain.  The conference will be built around AIM’s newly created seven step framework for success.  Booking opens on 3rd February.  AIM
 
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  Website commemorates Waterloo with blood, body parts... and wellingtons  
 
 
A new website has been launched by the National Army Museum, commemorating the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo.  It features 200 objects, which often reflect the early 19th century stomach for memorabilia representing the horror of the battle.  The exhibits include a blood stained saw and glove, used by a field surgeon to amputate the Earl of Uxbridge’s leg (the leg itself was preserved as an attraction at the village of Waterloo in the years following 1815). Dentures made from the teeth of the dead, the body armour of a French soldier who died in battle, Napoleon’s cloak and Wellington’s wellington boots are also included. The Battle, on 18th June 1815, killed 65,000 of the 200,000 men who took part, and ended years of war in Europe. Waterloo 200
 
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  Workshop brings together conservators and scientists  
 
 
A free half-day Cultural Heritage workshop will bring together scientists from Imperial College with conservators from  local museums, art galleries and cultural institutions.   The workshop will showcase collaboration on museum projects such as the conservation of the Mazarin Chest, and offer opportunities for networking. It runs from 1.30pm on 11th February: deadline for applying for a place is 6th February.  Imperial College
 
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  Researching culture  
 
 
  Culture at King’s looks back on half a century of arts policy  
 
 
Culture at King’s has been excavating fifty years of youth arts policy in its report Step by step: arts policy and young people 1944 – 2014.  Commenting on the report, Director Deborah Bull writes, “From time to time, there was a distinct sense of Groundhog Day.  The familiar debate about the purpose of arts policy weaves its way through the many decades we explored in the project.  Should policy be directed towards improving understanding and knowledge of the arts, building audiences for the future, or inculcating civility in preparation for adulthood?  Or should it be about fostering young people’s innate creativity?”  She says that we have now reached a point where it’s no longer contentious for the Arts Council to work on education, but that some planks of good arts policy for the young are missing: in particular learning from international experience, and a greater emphasis on arts for the very young as we understand more about how formative the 0-5 years are in creating life chances and patterns of behaviour.  Guardian, King’s College (full report), The Stage
 
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  Daniel Fujiwara tracks happy through appy  
 
 
Arts Council England has published a new report, Cultural activities, artforms and wellbeing, co-authored by LSE happiness economist Daniel Fujiwara.  It explores the results of giving an iphone app, Mappiness, to tens of thousands of people in the UK, and inviting them to track their subjective wellbeing at various times and places.  Dozens of activities tracked included shopping, DIY, organising finances and sex.  ACE then extracted average happiness at a variety of cultural events and places.  The report comments, “subjective wellbeing data are taking an increasingly prominent and important role in policy analysis and academic research.”  They say that although the respondents may not be representative of the whole UK population, results are suggestive.  The top co-efficients for happiness among artforms were:
 
  • Theatre, dance concert 8.735 (second of all listed activities)
  • Singing, performing 7.731 (third)
  • Exhibition, museum, library 7.457 (fourth)
 
By contrast, housework and diy has a co-efficient of -0.651.  Museums, libraries and exhibitions have the third highest co-efficient for relaxation of all activities at 6.017.  Arts Council, ACE blog
 
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  AIM’s new advocacy toolkit now includes social and environmental impact  
 
 
AIM’s economic impact toolkit was launched in 2010 to help museums make the case for their usefulness locally.  Many museums have wanted to expand into other areas of advocacy where cause and effect are harder to measure.  Now AIM has extended the toolkit to cover social and environmental impact with help from DC Research, and Arts Council England funding.  The new material is available free on the AIM website.  AIM says “museums will be able to identify and explain the positive impacts they are having and be confident that they can share these in a way that will be credible and note-worthy to people from outside the heritage sector.”  AIM
 
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  V&A removes image of Mohammed from its website  
 
 
The V&A has removed a picture from its website, which shows an Iranian artist’s view of the prophet Mohammed.  Olivia Colling for the Museum said, “as the museum is a high-profile public building already on a severe security alert, our security team made the decision that it was best to remove the image from our online database (it remains within the collection).”  The image was lent to the Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam for an exhibition in 2013.  A curator there, Mirjam Shatanawi said, “if Muslims feel offended by images made by other Muslims out of reverence for the prophet, I’m not sure if the museum should decide not to show them. It seems like choosing one interpretation of Islam over the other.”  Writing for the Spectator, Barnaby Rogerson says that books from the 60s and 70s show images from a ‘dozen’ museums, but that a ‘selective silence’ now prevails over holdings. Guardian, Independent, Spectator
 
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  Disability and access  
 
 
  People with learning disabilities ‘underserved’ by museums, argues new report  
 
 
Social policy research organisation Lemos & Crane has published a new report claiming that many artforms and museums provide a poor service to people with learning disabilities.  Re-imagine: Improving access to the arts, galleries and museums for people with learning disabilities says that performing arts are the exception, and that activities are patchy, occasional or have been dropped at many venues.  Some positive museum examples included were an easy read information guide from the Sir John Soane Museum, and Tate Liverpool’s In the Frame, a steering group of adults with learning disabilities, running since 2006. 
 
Re-imagine’s sample size was very small (26 respondents, including six museums and three galleries) and so may or may not be representative of the sector.  In response to the report, the Museums Association is now calling for examples of good practice.  Arts Industry (subscription only), Lemos & Crane
 
Also:  Meanwhile a growing number of museums are exploring how to offer a better service to people with autism.  Oxford Aspire are the latest to create a new resource for those using their museums.  Oxford Aspire
 
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  Museums participate in Disabled Access Day  
 
 
Museums took part in a new annual event, Disabled Access Day, which encourages public venues to think about their accessibility.  The RAF museum was among the early adopters and reported a greater number of disabled visitors on January 17th as well as general public interest in its handling collection events.  Tate Modern and the Queen’s Gallery also took part.  Blogging for the HLF, Liz Ellis highlighted heritage venues with good access, praising “multi-sensory resources, including BSL video and tactile information boards” for blind and partially sighted visitors at the Science Museum’s Information Age exhibition.  Disabled Access Day, RAF Museum, HLF
 
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  Anniversaries  
 
 
february_2015/resize15.-nash-(c)-ashmolean-museum,-university-of-oxford.jpg
 
Paul Nash (1889‒1946) Under the Cliff, 1940. Watercolour and white bodycolour over black chalk © Tate, London
 
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  Descendants of Gallipoli soldiers invited to apply for commemoration tickets  
 
 
The UK Government and Australian and New Zealand High Commissions will be leading a major commemoration of the 1915 Gallipoli campaign at the Cenotaph on 25th April.  Descendants of those who served in the campaign can apply for tickets to attend.  Gov.uk
 
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  British Library puts testimonies online for Holocaust Memorial Day  
 
 
The British Library published a new online resource, Jewish Survivors of the Holocaust, on Holocaust Memorial Day.  It consists of over a thousand hours of testimonies in 289 interviews with survivors, many of whom experienced the Holocaust as children.  Lead Curator of Oral History Dr Rob Perks said, “this is a unique collection, one of the largest and most extensive collections of Holocaust survivor testimonies in the UK, and also one of the largest in the world. The British Library has been at the forefront of ensuring these voices are captured since the work began in the 1980s.  Since then many survivors have died but their voices and experiences have been preserved.”  Culture24, British Library
 
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  MPs work to reduce “greatest scale of looting since the Second World War”  
 
 
Two Conservative MPs are calling for greater collaboration among foreign governments to halt looting of ancient artefacts by Islamic State.  Robert Jenrick MP, formerly a director of Sotherby’s says “this is the greatest scale of looting we have seen since the Second World War”.  There will be a debate on the issue in the Commons in the next few weeks, where Jenrick will be supported by Hugo Swire, who was previously a director at Christies.  Meanwhile the US Army is planning to recruit specialist art historians “at museum director level” to advise commanders and work with civilian authorities after battles.  Art Newspaper (subscription only), Independent, Alaribya
 
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  Appointments and Honours  
 
 
  Neil MacGregor receives honour from Germany  
 
 
British Museum Director Neil MacGregor has received the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany at a ceremony at the German Embassy in London.  The honour was for ‘passion and commitment’ to the art and history of Germany, both while at the National Gallery and at the British Museum, reflected in the recent exhibition and radio series Germany: Memories of a Nation.  German Embassy
 
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  Appointments  
 
 
Rupert Gavin has been appointed Chair of Historic Royal Palaces for the next three years.  Gov.uk
 
Richard Findlay has been appointed Chair of Creative Scotland.  He was formerly first Chair of National Theatre Scotland.  Creative Scotland
 
Dame Mary Archer DBE has been appointed Chair of the Science Museum Group.  A physical chemist, she was Chair of Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust until 2012.  Gov.uk
 
Kate Mavor will become Chief Executive of English Heritage when the newly-organised body begins operation in April.  She was previously Chief Executive of the National Trust for Scotland.  English Heritage
 
Duncan Wilson, currently head of Alexandra Palace, will become Chief Executive of Historic England.  Museums Journal
 
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  Education, training and consultation  
 
 
  £109m announced for children’s cultural education programme  
 
 
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan and Culture Secretary Sajid Javid have announced £109m spend on children’s music, filmmaking, dance and local heritage activities.  Organisations receiving grants include the BFI Film Academy, National Youth Dance Company and Sorrell Foundation Art & Design Saturday Clubs.
 
Additionally, Nicky Morgan announced new ‘more rigorous’ content for many arts GCSEs and A levels.  They include a new emphasis on drawing in art and design, theoretical content in dance, and a greater critical engagement with a wider range of music for those studying the subject.  Gov.uk, Gov.uk (arts curriculum)
 
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  National Gallery and Art Fund seeks regional partners for curator trainee scheme  
 
 
The National Gallery and Art Fund are seeking regional museums to be partners in their scheme to offer two fully funded curatorial traineeships for the period 2015 – 17.  Each trainee will work for 22 months in the National Gallery and a regional museum.  Art Fund Director Stephen Deuchar said, “this initiative was launched in 2011 to provide the best possible training and support for the next generation of curators – now entering its third phase, it is fantastic to see how the programme has grown and strengthened from year to year.”  Museums Journal, Art Fund
 
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  'No chocolate broccoli' - growing popularity of online games for museums  
 
 
The Art Newspaper has described the growing popularity of online games and gaming events in museums.  Both Tate and the British Museum have recently built outposts on Minecraft which were instantly popular. Nick Harris who worked on Minecraft for the BM said they had expected 20 volunteers to help with the project, instead "it exploded...twitter went berserk and we had more than a thousand applicants in a single day".  Meanwhile the V&A ran a Games Jam which gave designers 48 hours to build games around their Medieval and Renaissance collections. Its subsequent Minecraft evening mesmerised 350 teenage boys for an hour and a half.  The Wellcome Collection is also a leading creator of museum computer games: digital lead Danny Birchall says their motto is 'no chocolate broccoli' - the content has to be genuinely engaging, not simply made palatable to some audiences by an association with digital.  He adds that museums are still "scratching the surface of what's possible" and that with the same budget, games could have the same reach as exhibitions.  "I think people are less willing to take that risk because it doesn't have the same intimacy of contact with the venue.  Knowing that 100,000 have done something online is never quite as reassuring as having 10,000 people walk through your door".  Art Newspaper (subscription only)
 
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  Museums Association Code of Ethics consultation closes soon  
 
 
The Museums Association's consultation on the review of their Code of Ethics is open until 13th February. Although it was partly updated in 2007, there has not be a thorough review of the Code of Ethics since 2002. The Museums Association is keen to hear views from all parts of the sector and responses can be submitted online. Museums Association 
 
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  Employment  
 
 
  Staff vote to strike at the National Gallery  
 
 
Staff at the National Gallery have voted to strike over plans to outsource gallery and visitor services to a private contractor.  94% of staff voting in the PCS ballot were in favour of strike action, on a 62% turnout.  PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka said, “It’s a pretty clear message they are sending to managers – they’re saying they want to work for the National Gallery and not a private security firm”. The National Gallery said, "Each proposal for a way forward has been rejected and we are very disappointed we have been unable to find common ground on which to develop the necessary changes.  Therefore, the National Gallery will now continue to seek a partner to manage the provision of some of our visitor-facing and security services, protecting the existing terms and conditions in their present state.”  Guardian, Museums Journal
 
Also: RAMM Exeter may lose a number of staff, as Exeter Council seeks to save £4m over three years.  Museums Journal, Exeter Express
 
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  Chris Bryant vs James Blunt in spat on diversity of opportunity  
 
 
In his first interview since becoming Shadow Culture Minister, Chris Bryant MP said that he wanted to see more diversity of opportunity in the cultural sector.  “The truth is that people who subsidise the arts most are artists themselves…That of course makes it much more difficult if you come from a background where you can’t afford to do that.  I’m delighted that Arts Council England have done more on their apprenticeship scheme, but I think a lot more museums, galleries, arts companies need to pay not just lip service to or tick the box of diversity, but embed themselves in a much wider community to increase access.” 
 
He also said, “I am delighted that Eddie Redmayne won [a Golden Globe for best actor], but we can’t just have a culture dominated by Eddie Redmayne and James Blunt and their ilk,” prompting a furious response from James Blunt, who denied that a public school education was any help in his career.  Chris Bryant replied that he was not knocking Blunt’s success, but that “[it is much harder] if your parents can’t subsidise you for a few years whilst you make your name and if you can’t afford to take on an unpaid internship.”  National Theatre Director Nicholas Hytner also commented saying it was unfair to single out the arts: “the problem is a much wider social problem.  We have been brought to a place where, whatever you want to do, if you’ve been privately educated you are going to find it easier to do it.”  Guardian, Express, Telegraph (full text of letters), BBC, Guardian (Nicholas Hytner)
 
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  Creative Employment Programme extends to 2016  
 
 
The Creative Employment Programme, which supports employers to take on apprentices in the creative sector has been extended for one more year until 2016.  Supported by Arts Council England and the National Lottery, it has already worked with 850 cultural organisations to create 1,000 apprenticeships and 1,200 internships.  Grants per employee range from £1.5 - £2.5k, and applications are open until November 2015.  The apprenticeships are aimed at people aged 16 – 24, including graduates and those with few or no qualifications.  Creative and Cultural Skills is keen to encourage more museums to participate in the programme.  Museum Development North West, CCSkills
 
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  HSE fine mining museum after 2011 fatality  
 
 
Two companies and Yorkshire’s National Coal Mining Museum Trust were ordered to pay £590k in fines after a miner was killed in 2011, while working on a £2.7m improvement project below ground at the museum.  An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive found that the equipment supplier and contractor had failed to supply adequate equipment and carry out proper safety checks.  The National Coal Mining Museum Trust was fined £10k with £35k in costs.  HSE
 
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  Until 2039  
 
 
  "2039 rule" to remain  
 
 
Despite a campaign by museums, libraries and archives, and much evidence from the cultural heritage sector about the public benefits of the proposed changes (including from NMDC), the Government has decided against implementing its proposal to alter the term of copyright in some unpublished works to ensure it was the same as published works. This follows a consultation. This means that unpublished works created before 1st August 1989 will remain in copyright until 2039 regardless of when they were created, including many letters, poems and journals relating to the First World War. IPO
 
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  Exhibition highlights 2015, Part Two  
 
 
february_2015/resize8.-palmer-(c)-ashmolean-museum,-university-of-oxford.jpg
 
Samuel Palmer (1805‒81) Tintagel Castle: Approaching Rain, c. 1848‒49.  Watercolour and bodycolour, mixed in parts with gum arabic, over indications in graphite and black chalk © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
 
We have added to our rolling list of major highlights from NMDC museums for the coming year.  Here are some of the exhibitions coming up, read the whole list here.
 
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  All of this Belongs to You  
 
 
As the election approaches, the V&A's All of this Belongs to You examines the role of public institutions in contemporary life and what it means to be responsible for a national collection.  A series of specially commissioned interventions around the museum will raise questions about the opportunities, obligations and limits to participation in this national institution. The Museum intends the exhibition to act as a laboratory for public life and explore the role of design and architecture in defining civic identity, technology, security, citizenship, democracy, the public realm and urban experience.
 
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  Fashion in adversity  
 
 
IWM's Fashion on the Ration: 1940s Street Style explores how fashion survived and even flourished under the strict rules of rationing during the Second World War, often in new and unexpected ways.  It describes how people found new ways to dress, from adopting more casual styles to demonstrating amazing ingenuity in renovating, recycling and creating their own clothes.
 
Meanwhile the V&A's Shoes: Pleasure & Pain, opening in June, looks at the extremes of footwear from around the globe, presenting around 200 pairs of shoes ranging from a sandal decorated in pure gold leaf originating from ancient Egypt to elaborate designs by contemporary makers.  It will explore the latest developments in footwear technology creating the possibility of ever higher heels and dramatic shapes.
 
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  Sound and music  
 
 
After the highly successful and experimental Metamorphosis: Titian 2012, where contemporary artists – including choreographers, composers, dancers, poets and visual artists – responded to paintings by Titian, the National Gallery is inviting six sound artists and musicians to each select a painting from the National Gallery’s collection and to create new work in response to it.
 
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  Games of Crowns  
 
 
2015 will be a year of many anniversaries of significant historical moments, including 200 years since the Battle of Waterloo. The British Museum's Bonaparte and the British - prints and propaganda in the age of Napoleon displays printed material from its collections which either glorified or reviled Napoleon.
 
It is also the 300th anniversary of the 1715 Jacobite rising. Game of Crowns: the 1715 Jacobite Rising at the National Library of Scotland explores the major events in Scottish history that led to the rising and the efforts made by the Government to keep the Stuarts in exile. The handwritten order for the massacre of Glencoe is one of the prize exhibits.
 
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  Jobs  
 
 
Current vacancies on the NMDC jobs website include:
 
 
See the full selection of current jobs at NMDC members' organisations here.
 
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  And finally... resurrecting an ancient library from ashes  
 
 
New research offers the possibility that we may soon be able to read a library carbonised two millennia ago by the explosion of Vesuvius. The lavish library of 1,785 philosophical scrolls was rediscovered at Herculaneum in 1754, but all were blackened to a state so fragile that attempts at unrolling have often been destructive.  Now the National Research Council in Naples has found a way to read the scrolls without unrolling them, using x-rays.  The work is at an early stage, with just a few words identified, but they hope a more sophisticated x-ray machine will be able to decipher complete scrolls.  Guardian
 
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