Launch: MDNW Contemporary Collecting Toolkit

Collecting contemporary histories to ensure collections are up to date and relevant can be a major task for museums. For some, contemporary collecting is high on the agenda, but for others it’s a new approach and one that may feel overwhelming at first.

To help, MDNW commissioned independent curator Jen Kavanagh to develop a Contemporary Collecting Toolkit.

This toolkit is an introduction to contemporary collecting, for museum staff and volunteers who don’t have direct experience of acquiring recent material and who want to understand the basics. It aims to provide advice and guidance on how to undertake contemporary collecting projects, outlining some of the practical considerations that need to be made and showcasing examples from museums.


We will be adding new case studies to the toolkit next year from three museums in the North West that took part in our Contemporary Collecting Pilot Programme in 2018-19.

We hope the toolkit provides some inspiration and support for those looking at collecting projects. To download your copy click this link: MDNW_ContemporaryCollectingToolkit_July2019

Job Opportunity – Blackpool Council

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Heritage Assistant
Salary: £19,544 per annum
Location: Blackpool
Hours: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Closing date: 27 August 2019

Blackpool Council Heritage Service is seeking a Heritage Assistant to join  as a permanent member of staff.

For more details and how to apply visit:

Job Opportunity – Royal Horticultural Society

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Interpretation Coordinator
Salary: Up to £26,000 per annum
Location: Salford
Hours: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Closing date: 4pm 6 September 2019

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) are looking for an Interpretation Coordinator at the new RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford.

To apply please visit the website via the link and apply online using the application form at:

2019 Sporting Heritage & the Armed Forces Roadshow


As part of the second year of this exciting project, and to celebrate and support this year’s National Sporting Heritage Day, we are bringing our training to a town near you!

Each free packed session on our autumn Sporting Heritage & the Armed Forces Roadshow, will be full of bite sized topics to support the way you present, interpret and record your collections. Sessions will include practical digitisation support, hands-on object mounting and display advice, top tips for label writing, and ideas to support the creation of object handling activities.

Events will be held across the country with one in the North West:

  • Tuesday 24th September at The Fusiliers Museum, Bury

To book your place, please visit this link:


Sporting Heritage Summit 2019

Wednesday 23rd & Thursday 24th October 2019
CC4 Museum of Welsh Cricket, Cardiff

This year’s Sporting Heritage Summit programme has now been announced, so if you are thinking of attending don’t delay as places are limited.

You can view the full two day programme here.

The conference draws together individuals from across the sector including sports clubs, governing bodies, museums, archives, schools, universities, and community groups.

To find out more and to book a place, click here.

The Sporting Heritage Summit 2019 is delivered in partnership with Microform Imaging Limited and the Welsh Government.

Any queries regarding the Summit can be directed to Ali Glew, Conference Organiser,

Join the Museums Association Ethics Committee


The Museums Association (MA) is looking for a new member to join the Ethics Committee.

The committee is responsible for upholding the principles of the Code of Ethics for Museums and overseeing the effective and consistent operation of the code.

The aim of the Ethics Committee is to develop and champion the application of sound ethical principles and behaviours within the museum community; give advice and guidance on ethical matters to the museum community, including MA board and staff; and review the code and recommend to the MA board amendments to the Code of Ethics, where necessary.

The role involves attending approximately four meetings per year at the MA’s offices in London and liaising as a committee via email and telephone. The role is not remunerated but expenses are reimbursed.

We are particularly looking for a committee member with experience in any of the following areas: sponsorship and international work; community engagement; data use and digital engagement.

For further information please click here


Small-Scale Development Programme

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The next ACE-funded Small-Scale Development Programme is taking place on 30 October – 1 November in Leeds.

This programme is specifically designed for leaders of small-scale arts and cultural organisations in England. It’s content is tailored to help leaders gain a better understanding of their audiences, define their organisation’s vision and make marketing a key part of their strategic planning.

The programme is subsidised by Arts Council England, delegates get pay £95 + VAT for a 2.5 day residential and follow up coaching sessions.

For more details and how to book visit:

National Programmes Conference 2019 – Tickets on Sale

This year’s conference will take place at the British Museum on Monday 4 November 2019, 09:30-17:00. It aims to explore equality and diversity in museum practice across the UK – highlighting issues of representation, authority and power with particular focus on disability, class, gender, race and sexuality.

The conference seeks to provide a platform for people working in and with museums to honestly and openly share their work, research and ideas on how UK museums can address their own histories and those of their communities. The conference will focus on museum practice: addressing the realities of museum work and how colleagues are effecting change within their organisations.

Tickets are available to purchase online via the British Museum’s website (scroll to the ‘How to book’ section). Concessions tickets are available for anyone who needs them (e.g. disabled people, students, early-career professionals, low-waged or unemployed people).

A limited number of travel bursaries are available for those who would otherwise be unable to attend. These will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. If you would like to request one, please email once you have booked your ticket, explaining why attending the conference will be beneficial to you and your work, and what support you need.


British Library Labs Symposium

11 November 2019 – British Library NW1 2DB 


The BL Labs Symposium is an international annual networking event and awards ceremony showcasing innovative projects which have used the British Library’s digital collections and data over the past year. The awards recognise outstanding use of British Library’s digital content in the categories of Research, Commercial, Artistic, or Teaching & Learning. This will be our seventh annual symposium.

For more details and how to book please visit:

Museums+Tech 2019: openness

Details about upcoming Museums Computer Group event.

Museums+Tech 2019: openness

Friday October 18 2019 – British Library, 96 Euston Road, London, NW1 2DB


How can museums and other cultural organisations be more open in terms of their collections and processes, is openness always desirable, and what barriers might we have to overcome for truly open digital cultural heritage?

Museums and other cultural organisations have long been encouraged to be more open, in multiple senses of the word. From a technology point of view, this idea often centres on sharing collections data, producing open source software and tools, and developing open standards – all of which could have far-reaching implications for user engagement, future collaborations, and long-term preservation.

Don’t miss your chance to hear inspirational presentations and cutting-edge case studies, take part in discussions on the latest thinking in the digital museum world, and network with an international audience.

Museums Computer Group’s events are an opportunity to learn from experts and peers, and have an excellent track record for featuring a range of emerging and eminent speakers presenting on topics that matter to you now.

Come prepared to challenge speakers, ask questions and network in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. We will also host an evening event open to all so you can continue the conversations started during the day.

For more details and how to book please visit:

Small-Scale Development Programme

 30 October – 1 November 2019
Weetwood Hall, Leeds

From the Arts Marketing Association (AMA):

The Small-Scale Development Programme is designed specifically for leaders of small-scale cultural organisations. You’re likely to have many competing demands on your time and this programme will support you in your role as leader. It will help you reach and engage more people more often, realise your ambitions and drive a successful future.

This short and intensive programme is formed of a two and a quarter day residential to develop skills and knowledge, with follow-up online coaching sessions to help put your plans into practice. We know how busy you are, so we’ve designed the programme to make the most of your time.

You will:
– define your organisation’s vision and goals
– develop a clearer understanding of your current approach to audiences
– gain insight into how to make marketing a key part of your strategic planning

All of this, plus all your meals and accommodation at the residential, is covered by the heavily-subsidised fee of only £95 + VAT.

Available to leaders of small-scale organisations in England, to find out more and book, please visit: