NMDC conference – Museums and Galleries Responding to the Climate and Ecological Crisis, 18-19th November


National Museums Directors’ Council (NMDC) is hosting a virtual conference on the climate crisis, convened by CEO of the Horniman, Nick Merriman who is also Chair of NMDC’s environment and ecology subgroup. Participants will discuss how museum professionals can learn from each other’s efforts to tackle the climate and ecological crisis. The focus will be on positive action and practical solutions.

The conference will be free and held online with sessions across 18th and 19th November.

For further details and to book a place see here.

Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries 2020-22

Fellowship applications are now open for the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries 2020-2022 programme, which will support 50 salaried jobs in arts and cultural organisations across the UK, for individuals from low socio-economic backgrounds.

The programme is dedicated to supporting early-career artists, curators, producers and creatives to thrive and develop.

The first job opportunities will open for applications on Tuesday 20 October.

The rest of the job opportunities will be added between October 2020 and March 2021.

For further details and to keep updated about the latest opportunities, please click here.

Job Opportunity: Victoria Baths

Job Opportunity: Victoria Baths Trust
Job title: Finance Manager
Salary: £18,271 (pro-rata of a full-time salary of £30,451)
Location: Manchester
Part Time 21 hours per week
Closing date: 6pm, Sunday 8 November 2020

Victoria Baths, Manchester is an historic swimming pool which is restoring in phases. Meanwhile, it continues to operate as a heritage visitor centre, events, arts and weddings venue.

They are seeking a Finance Manager with knowledge of QuickBooks and Excel.

For a full job description and how to apply, please click here.

Job Opportunities: Manchester Craft & Design

Job Opportunity: Manchester Craft & Design
Job title: Marketing & Digital Officer
Salary: £22,480
Location: Manchester
35 hours per week
Contract: Fixed term contract until 31 March 2022
Closing date: 10am Monday 16 November 2020

Manchester Craft & Design (MCAD) is a registered charity responsible for managing Manchester Craft & Design Centre (MCDC).  They are seeking Marketing & Digital Officer with significant experience of arts and / or retail marketing, excellent communication and project management skills.

For more information about the role, please click here.

Job Opportunity: Manchester Craft & Design
Job title: Site Supervisor
Salary: £9.50 per hour (40 hours per week)
Location: Manchester
40 hours per week
Contract: Fixed Term Contract until 31 March 2021
Closing date: 10am Monday 9 November 2020

The Site Supervisor is will have responsibility for securely opening and closing the building, light caretaking duties and keeping the site tidy. 

For more information about the role, please click here.

Tender Opportunity: Exhibition installation at Kirkby Stephen East

Locomotive No 65033, which is need of restoration.

The Locomotive Conservation & Learning Trust (LCLT) has issued a tender to restore, operate and interpret unique Victorian North Eastern Railway (NER) locomotive No 65033 at Kirby Stephen East railway station.

The project is funded through a combination of a grants from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Arts Council and various support schemes.

The bidder should be a specialist who has experience of creating interpretation displays. The budget for the project is £75,000. Closing date for applications is 30 November 2020.

For more information, please click here.

Call for Papers: NatSCA Conservation Twitter Conference

The Natural Sciences Collections Association (NatSCA) are welcoming abstracts for the NatSCA Conservation Twitter conference to be held in January 2021. Deadline for submissions is 30th November.

The subject of each submission can be as diverse as the field of natural history itself, from storage projects, preventative work, treatments, new innovations, or to how recent world health events are shaping the way we work with collections.

For more information, including the abstract submission form, please click here.

Museum Freelance Survey Results

From the Museum Freelance Network:

Valuable insights into freelancing with museums, galleries, heritage sites, archives and galleries are now available, following the publication of the findings from an extensive survey carried out earlier this year by Museum Freelance.

Museum Freelance, the organisation that supports and champions freelancers and consultants working with museums, galleries, heritage sites, archives and galleries, ran the survey in March and April 2020. The intention was to plug a gap in robust data on the self-employed workforce in our sector, which is making it harder for freelancers and consultants to thrive and be recognised as the integral part of the sector’s ecosystems that they are.

MDNW coronavirus update

Here’s our round up of news about COVID-19 relevant to the sector from this week. These are up to date at the time of posting but please check the original source for any updates.

Most of the relevant news is already included in the DCMS Museums & Galleries Sector Coronavirus bulletin published on 19th October – Coronavirus bulletin 20201019. Anything additional, or updates to the information contained in the DCMS bulletin, is listed below.

Museum reopening guidance
NMDC Good Practice Guidelines (21st October)
Updates are made regularly (and listed at the bottom of the website) as government guidance changes so keep checking the website to make sure you are working to the most recent version. The guidance was updated on 21st October to include further information on the implication of local alert levels for museums, including cafes and restaurants in museums.

Read our blog post here for the full list of guidance and resources around reopening.

Latest government information
Latest information and advice (23rd October)

Changes to the Job Support Scheme (22nd October)
Changes have been announced to the Job Support Scheme to help employers retain their employees. Businesses that are operating but facing decreased demand can get support for wages through JSS Open. Those businesses that are legally required to close their premises as a direct result of coronavirus restrictions set by the government can get support through JSS Closed.

JSS Open will give employers the option of keeping their employees in a job on shorter hours by increasing the scale of support available to employers through JSS Open above what was initially announced, in order to protect more jobs.

The employee will need to work a minimum of 20% of their usual hours and the employer will continue to pay them as normal for the hours worked. Alongside this, the employee will receive 66.67% of their normal pay for the hours not worked – this will be made up of contributions from the employer and from the government. The employer will pay 5% of reference salary for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £125 per month, with the discretion to pay more than this if they wish. The government will pay the remainder of 61.67%, of reference salary for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £1,541.75 per month. This will ensure employees continue to receive at least 73% of their normal wages, where they earn £3,125 a month or less.

The Job Support Scheme will be open from 1st November 2020 and run for 6 months, until 30th April 2021. Employers will be able to claim in arrears from 8th December 2020, with payments made after the claim has been approved. Neither the employer nor the employee needs to have benefitted from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to be eligible for the Job Support Scheme.

Further guidance on the steps that employers need to take to calculate and make a claim to the Job Support Scheme will be published by the end of October.

Working safely during coronavirus – heritage locations (21st October)

Working safely during coronavirus – the visitor economy (21st October)

Coronavirus: How to help safely (15th October)
Updated coronavirus volunteering guidance in line with the new announcements on local COVID alert levels.


Arts Council England
Developing Your Creative Practice
Developing Your Creative Practice has reopened for applications and is aimed at helping artists and creatives take their work to the next level. The budget has been increased from £3.6 million to £18 million, to be distributed through four rounds between October 2020 and October 2021. The deadline for the first round is 5th November.

DYCP will support research, time to create new work, travel, training, developing ideas, networking or mentoring. Applications can be made for between £2,000 and £10,000. The definition of who can apply has been expanded to include performer/creators, arts and cultural educators, community practitioners/engagement specialists, cultural conservators, creative enablers and creative technicians. Applicants also now only need to have had one years’ experience outside of a formal educational setting.

National Lottery Project Grants
National Lottery Project Grants are open for applications. Until April 2021, the fund will focus on the needs of smaller independent organisations and individual practitioners. Supplementary guidance has been published that outlines the changes. The fund will also focus more on activity that gives organisations the time to think, plan and test new ideas. For the first time with this fund, ACE will be able to invest in activity where the route to public engagement may take longer, and may take place beyond the boundaries of the activity you apply for. The usual requirement to provide 10% match funding has been removed.

From 5 October until March 2021, NPOs will also be eligible to apply to National Lottery Project Grants for activities over £15,000.

Culture Recovery Fund: more organisations receive vital support (17th October)
Final list of cultural organisations funded through the Culture Recovery Fund administered by Arts Council England.

National Lottery Heritage Fund (15th October)
Launch of two new programmes to help organisations to increase their capacity and resilience and consider new ways of working, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund:

Rebuilding Heritage – One-to-one and small group support delivered by the Heritage Alliance. The programme will help participants build confidence, overcome immediate challenges and plan for a sustainable future, with a focus on business planning, fundraising, marketing and communications. Opportunities are being offered on a rolling basis, with bi-monthly deadlines. Apply for the January/February group by 15th December

Heritage Compass – A programme for small and medium sized heritage organisations in England, delivered by Cause4 in partnership with the Arts Marketing Association and Creative United. It will work with 150 heritage organisations across the next two years to:

  • promote skills development
  • grow operational knowledge
  • strengthen leadership
  • diversify funding
  • identify solutions to financial and environmental threats

Applications are open until 6th November, and again from 16th November–16th December.

Museums Association
In Practice – Case studies on how museums are adapting to become Covid-safe
Redundancy Hub – Provides support and resources for people going through redundancy. Also includes a redundancy tracker and organisational and employment FAQs.

Reports and surveys
Museum Freelance –  What’s the Story? Museum Freelance Survey 2020
The results of the first Museum Freelance survey on freelancers and consultants working with museums, galleries, heritage, libraries and archives in the UK, including the impact of Covid-19.

To look back at any of our previous blog posts and their links, find them on our website using the search term ‘coronavirus’.

Job Opportunity: Digital Learning Consultant

Job OpportunitySalford Heritage Services
Job title: Freelance Digital Learning Consultant: Museum without Walls

Salary: £11,250 including VAT and expenses (approx. 45 days’ work)
Based in own office, some travel will be required
part time, 45 days from November 2020 to March 2021
Contract: fixed term until end March 2021
Closing date: Friday 6th November 5pm

Salford Heritage Services are inviting applications from experienced freelance consultants working within the field of museum learning and digital engagement to support our Museum without Walls programme, based at Salford Museum and Art Gallery and Ordsall Hall. This project aims to develop and implement a flexible and sustainable blended learning programme for schools and families, through which learners can engage with museum collections, expert educators, and inspirational learning experiences. 

The Digital Learning consultant will manage this process, working in partnership with Learning, Marketing and IT colleagues as well as local teachers to ensure relevance and need. As a permanent part of our offer, it will increase access to our collections, and make our activities more accessible to those facing barriers to on-site learning. 

The consultant will need good working knowledge of best practice in digital learning and a technical understanding to implement their work. They will also develop and manage the evaluation of the project.

For further information and a full brief for the Freelance Digital Learning Consultant, please click here.

Opportunity: ‘Making of Us’ Artist Call Out – Deadline Extended

Opportunity: Making of Us Artist Call Out
Organisation: The Turnpike
Bursary: £2,000
Location: Variable with some travel Hours: Part-time
Dates: November 2020 to May 2021
Extended date: Fri 30rd October 2020, 5pm

From the Turnpike:

Applications are now open for the Making of Us, a professional development programme for socially engaged artists, which will include the following:

  • Training workshops delivered by partner organisations
  • Mentoring and peer-led knowledge exchange events
  • Participation in a ‘live’ collaboration project working with at least one other artist, one partner organisation, and individuals aged 13 – 25 years who identify as experiencing adversity (e.g. are care experienced, have mental health issues, are neuro-diverse or are living with a physical illness or impairment)
  • An opportunity to develop responsive non face-to-face practices, including digital and blended approaches with a focus on accessibility and inclusivity
  • Contributions to programme research and evaluation
  • Participation in a one-day conference in Spring 2022 to share learning with colleagues in Greater Manchester working across culture, health, and social sectors.

Further information and a full brief on the Freelance Evaluator role can be found here.