Need Help with your Museums Accreditation Application?

Is your museum due to receive their invitation to apply for musuems Accreditation?  Are you feeling a bit confused about how the new standard compares to the old standard.  These two following events are just for you:

Accreditation Help Workshop, 20th February at Walsall Leather Museum, 10 am – 2.30 pm

Need help on the new Accreditation standard?  The West Midlands Regional Accreditation Advisor, Fiona Mitchell-Innes will be leading this workshop, and will take delegates through the new requirements.  Book for FREE at


Accreditation Surgeries, 20th March at the Pen Museum, from 12.30-4.30 pm

Fiona Mitchell-Innes will be running 25 minute, 1-2-1 advice surgeries on Accreditation.  This will be your opportunity to ask questions about the scheme which are particular to your museum.  The  FREE surgeries will be booked on a first come-first served basis. Complete the  surgery booking form  and email back to Rachel Lambert-Jones by the 8th March 2013.

Pastures New and a Vacancy

I will shortly be leaving as Museum Development Officer for the Black Country, Birmingham and Telford & Wrekin.  I am moving to a new location, and will be the Museum Develoment Officer for Leicestershire & Rutland.  So same job, just different location!

I’ve had the most wonderful time and met the most kind and generous people.  I am going to miss my friends and colleagues in the region although looking forward to meeting new ones in the East Midlands.

Click here if would like to apply for the Museum Development Officer role for the Black Country, Birmingham and Telford & Wrekin. Be quick with your application though, the closing date is the 31st January 2013!

Top Museum Security Tips

Thanks to Glynis Powell, Museum Development Officer for Warwickshire & Solihull for highlighting these top tips!

Recently ACE and the Collections Trust have been hosting workshops about Museum Security.  If you haven’t been able to attend the seminars, William Brown, the National Museums Security advisor, has given some top tips on securing your museum.

Click here to read William’s tips.  Essential reading for all museums, what ever your size or organisation!

Do visit Glynis excellent blog for all museum news and updates

Yuletide Greetings

Wishing all my blog followers and readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

See you all in 2013!

The Power of Conversation

We all know that we feel a lot better if we have a good chat.  Well Wolverhampton Arts and Heritage Service (WAVE) have developed Conversation Clubs where people get together to talk.  The Conversation Clubs have been running for over 2 years.  The success of the clubs at targetting loneliness and isolation has meant that WAVE have now secured funding in partnership with the Creative Health CiC to establish Conversation Clubs in Community venues across Wolverhampton.

The Creating Conversations blog has some wonderful stories and pictures about the impact this simple idea, is having on people’s lives. An inspirational project which is also demonstrating the role museums can play in supporting their local communities.

A Sixth Sense

The West Midlands Museum Development Officer network has issued its Annual Report for 2011/12. Entitled A Sixth Sense the report details the activities undertaken by the Museum Development Officers.  It also contains case studies and information relating to the work of the Museum Development Officers.

The report has been produced using funding from Arts Council England’s Museum Development Fund. The West Midlands Museum Development Officer network is managed by The Marches Network, and supported by Arts Council England funding.

Click here to download the report

QR Codes: A Bit Like Marmite?

It does seem that QR codes can create reactions that are similar to Marmite, in that you either love them or hate them!

The West Midlands Museums Development Officer network (WMMDO) recently conducted a short scoping excercise looking at how QR codes are used in the museums sector and to find answers to the following questions:

  • What is the current use of QR codes by museums in the West Midlands?
  • Which types of museums are using QR codes?
  • What do museums want to achieve by using QR codes?
  • Why aren’t some museums using QR codes?
  • What help and support do museums need to use them?

17 museums in the West Midlands were interviewed for the exercise.  These museums were selected by the WMMDOs and covered a range of sizes and governance types.  The range also included museums who were using QR technology to those who had no experience at all. 

The report produced some really interesting results.  Some of the key findings include:

  • Knowledge about QR codes was high amoungst the museums. 100% having heard of QR codes.
  • Only 24% of museum staff had scanned a QR codes as a museum visitor.
  • Improving access to collections is the main way museums are using or plan to use QR codes, this is followed by marketing.
  • It was felt that smartphone technology is exclusive technology with the potential to isolate audiences.
  • There is scope to develop more creative ideas for using QR codes and engage visitors in dialogues.
  • Museums want practical training and guidance sheets to support them in developing their usage of QR codes.

Click here to download the full report

What Next?

The WMMDOs will be using findings from the report to inform the development of programmes to guide and support museums in the West Midlands on using QR codes, and social media in general.

Who To Contact?

If you have any questions relating to the scoping report please contact Rebecca Harvey at

Questions relating to the QR support programme for the West Midands should be directed to Emma Buckler at



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