Invitation for a numismatic collections review

Since 2013 Museum Development North West, in partnership with the Money & Medals Network, has been providing training and support to museums with numismatic collections. The next stage of our work is to carry out collections reviews with four museums to help bring underused numismatic collections back into use. We are now inviting applications from interested museums.

We will be appointing a numismatic specialist to undertake the reviews. They will spend time with the collections to identify key objects, strengths and weaknesses of the collection, and work with non-specialists within the museum to increase their knowledge and understanding of the collections. The consultant will suggest priorities and ideas for use, whether through exhibitions, learning, outreach etc., improvements to the care and management of the collections, and collections development. As a result of these reviews, the participating museums will begin work towards delivering increased public use and access to the collections from 2016 onwards.

Qualifying criteria

  • Accredited museums or those working towards Accreditation (NPOs and Major Partner Museums are ineligible). Preference will go to smaller to medium sized museums where the numismatic collection hasn’t been used for a number of years (however, we don’t want to discourage museums that are trying to use their own collection under their own steam so don’t be put off from applying if you’re already using your collection)
  • No numismatic specialism on staff
  • Commitment of three or four days for staff and/or volunteers to spend time with the numismatist
  • Museum commitment from the outset to produce a public outcome from the work – e.g. small temporary/permanent exhibition, schools resource, handling collection, event or programme of events

The selected museums will work with MDNW to identify possible sources of funding for the public outcome for the work.

How to apply

There is no application form. Please submit no more than 4 pages of A4 outlining:

  • Your museum
  • Brief description of your numismatic collection (including what you do and don’t know about it)
  • How much it currently is or isn’t used
  • Any plans you may have for the collection
  • Aspects of collection you’d like to focus on in particular – this could be a particular type of coin, medals or tokens, with approximate numbers
  • What you hope to gain from a collections review
  • The name(s) of the staff and/or volunteer(s) involved at the museum who will be working with the numismatist
  • A commitment to give time to the review, and to use the review for a public outcome – we would expect to see this commitment given from a senior manager

Once the museums have been selected and the numismatist appointed, the working relationship will be agreed between each museum and the specialist regarding when and how each review will be carried out. The review work will be carried out in autumn/winter 2015-16.

Documentation will be produced for each site and will demonstrate findings, suggestions for outcomes that are achievable and realistic, including future resources likely to be needed. The programme may highlight some partnerships, joint working or other ways in which the museum can collaborate to make the most of their numismatic collections to create an improved offer for visitors.

For further information or to submit an application please email Lynsey Jones, Museum Development Officer, at lynsey.jones@manchester.ac.uk. The deadline for applications is 5pm Friday 16th October 2015.

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