Save These Dates!

The West Midlands Museum Development Officers have just been notified of some great sessions that are taking place in January 2013.

Museums and Security, 7th January, 2013, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

The Collections Trust will be holding a workshop examining the issues around security in museums. The workshop aims are:

  • Increase awareness of museum security as a core element of good Collections Management practice
  • Improve capacity and expertise in basic museum security and housekeeping
  • Enhance awareness of the Arts Council’s support through the National Security Advisor
  • Improve the use of existing published material on the subject
  • Establish an online repository of expertise and examples of good practice

The workshop will also be particularly useful for museums who are currently preparing their Accreditation application. Full programme and on-line booking information to be released shortly.


Maximising Your Museum’s Potential – AIM Sustainability Workshop, 23rd January, 2013, Birmingham

Just a quick note to give you advance notice of an Esmeé Fairbairn Foundation funded Sustainability Workshops that AIM are organising at Birmingham  Museum & Art Gallery on Wednesday  23rd January 2012. The workshop is FREE and will look at how museum’s can increase their income.  Booking details to be released shortly. Draft programme



Major Museum Partners Make An Announcement

The ACE Major Museum Partners in the West Midlands, Birmingham Museums Trust and Ironbridge Gorge Museums, have announced how they are working together to support the regional sector.

The two museums will be working closer together to offer support for museums in the West Midlands.  This support includes:

  • Extension of the World Class Volunteering project, being led by Ironbridge
  • Opportunity for museums in the West Midlands to borrrow objects from Birmingham Museums Trust under a regional loans programme.
  • Birmingham Museums Trust is also working in partnership with the Marches Network to deliver the Museums on the Move programme: a mobile museum exhibition, and the regional loans programme.
  • Ironbridge will be supporting industrial heritage sites and museums to become more resilient.
  • The partners will be helping to develop a new regional partnership called Develop Skills – Creating the Future Forum which will share skills across the region.  This partnership also includes the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

More detail and information about the partnerships will be announced at the West Midlands Policy Forum Open Meeting on the 16th October 2012.

Full press release.


ACE Open Funding Streams

Arts Council England have announced lots of funding streams which museums can apply for:

Capital Programme: Offering grants of £1000,00 to £4999.00 for capital developments:


Strategic Touring Programme: To support development of touring exhibitions:


Creative People & Places Fund Round II: This fund supports increasing cultural engagement in areas where current participation is low.

Funding, funding,funding

Funding, funding, funding, I am sure that is word most often heard in museums.  Every museum is chasing that funding stream and all staff and volunteers are constantly on the look-out for new pots of money. When chasing that funding stream, it is very easy to forget about why you are writing the funding application.  You can fall into those all too easy traps of writing a project to fit a funding stream.  This can mean unsuccessful funding applications and fustration!

The Third Sector magazine has recently published the top 10 mistakes made in funding applications.  They are:

1. Applying for grants you can’t possibly get

2. Asking for too much money. Or not enough

3. Providing too much information

5. Streams of consciousness and other stylistic problems

6. The budget doesn’t add up

7. An invitation to talk to the funder isn’t taken up

8. Forgetting to tailor the application to the funder

9. Assuming the funder knows all about you

10. What difference will you make?

 Click here to read the full article and make your funding applications successful everytime!

Museums at Night Shifts Days

Museums at Night 2013 will be taking place from Thursday 16th May to Saturday 18th May.  Traditionally the event has run from Fridays till Sundays, but feedback from this years’ event has highlighted that many events do not take place on Sundays.  Many museums indicated that they find covering Sunday night events difficult or that there is low audience turn-out.  It was therefore decided to move the event one day earlier, giving museums the opportunity to have a major event on the Saturday night.

Have you thought what your museum could do for Museums at Night 2013?  Need inspiration and tips for successful events?  Have a look at the Museums at Night website for lots of ideas and resources.

Funding Awarded to Subject Specialist Networks

Arts Council England have awarded £174,600 to 22 Subject Specialist Networks.  The subject networks share knowledge, best practice and information on a wide range of  heritage related subjects. They help museums and heritage organisations access specialist skills and expertise.

The networks cover a whole range of subjects from British Archaeology to Screen Heritage.

See to see the full range of networks and their contact details.

Getting To Know You

The Getting To Know You project took place during 2011 and involved members of the Black Country Creative Education Network. The project focussed on talking to social care users and providers.  Getting to know them and finding out what they wanted from local museum, library and archives services.

The project highlighted that for social care users, reaching museums, libraries and archives venues, however local, is challenging. Many users find it difficult to access normal public transport. Many social care users are really interested in the services that museums, libraries and archives can provide, but many need this service providing in their own venues.

Following the project a number of venues in the Black Country have begun to develop their own outreach services for social care users, or developed adult education provision.

Do click the link below to download the project evaluation, which I hope is short and easy to read!

 Getting to Know You Project Evaluation Final

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