Category: Uncategorized

Making more of collections programme

MDNW have partnered with Manchester Museum, The Whitworth, Wordsworth Trust, Tullie House, the Human Remains Subject Specialist Network and Collections Trust to develop a series of taster session workshops looking at five different collection specialism areas: Human Remains; Geology, Botany and Entomology; Textiles; Manuscripts, Books and Fine Art; and Ethnography. The sessions, running from September 2017 to February 2018, are designed to inspire and raise confidence levels of delegates to make the most of areas of their collections that may be underused. They will give an overview of a variety of themes linked to working with collections such as:

  • Research and identification
  • Storage and display techniques
  • Basic care
  • Using collections to engage audiences

A sixth session with be run by Collections Trust, looking at Collection Review and Rationalisation, with case studies focusing on some of the collection areas covered in the previous workshops.

This series of training days will be used by MDNW to help develop packages of support around some of the subject areas from 2018 onwards.

For more information on each of the sessions, and to book places please click here.

Museums Funding Fair 2017

Museum Development North West

Thursday 21st September
Pyramid & Parr Hall, Warrington
11:00 – 15:00

We’re pleased to be hosting our 5th Annual Museums Funding Fair giving museums and arts professionals the opportunity to meet various funding organisations face-to-face.
Due to the success of last year we are pleased to also have a number of national museums in attendance to discuss potential partnership projects and loans.
The fair will also include a variety of workshops from the some of the organisations above and there will also be a workshop looking at how to write successful funding bids.

Organisations that will be present are:

  • Art Fund
  • Arts Council England
  • Association of Independent Museums
  • British Museum
  • Curious Minds
  • Heritage Lottery Fund
  • Museums Association
  • National Portrait Gallery
  • NWFed
  • Purchase Grant Fund
  • Tate

To book a place please visit our eventbrite page.

For more information and to book a 1:1 session with Arts Council England please contact…

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Evaluation Consultant Required – New North and South Evaluation Brief

New North and South is a three-year programme of co-commissions, exhibitions and intellectual exchange across a network of eleven arts organisations from the North of England and South Asia.
The partners are The Whitworth (University of Manchester) (lead), Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester Museum (University of Manchester), Liverpool Biennial, The Tetley (Leeds), Colombo Art Biennale, Dhaka Art Summit, Karachi Biennale, Kochi-Muziris Biennale, Lahore Biennale and British Council.
The aims of the New North and South are to:
1. Bring some of the best of contemporary South Asian art practice to audiences in the North of England
2. Build the confidence and knowledge of partners in identified areas of professional development need
3. Deepen our relationships with South Asian audiences (schools, families and adults)
4. Develop new partnerships from South Asian communities including artists and practitioners, volunteers, local stakeholders and donors
5. Trial new approaches to developing and sharing digital content to develop our local audiences and achieve greater national and international reach. 6. Establish a critical exchange and dialogue between international partners
We are seeking an evaluation to understand the impact of New North and South and how we can embed successful approaches into future work. We require the evaluation to analyse the impact of the programme as a whole, the success of the three strands of work, as well as how well activity has met the desired outcomes of Arts Council England’s Re:Imagine India and Ambition For Excellence funds.
Deadline for applications: 9am on 16 August 2017.
To access the full consultancy brief please email:

Pulling together: Collections Trust 2017 Conference

21st September 2017
The Hospitium, Museum Gardens, York

Being responsible for collections management can feel like ploughing a lone furrow. But it’s actually a museum-wide task that needs everyone to pull together – from the governing body to the people on the front desk. This year’s Collections Trust conference considers the human side of documentation systems, the people who capture and share information that gives museum objects meaning.

Wednesday 20 September 2017: pre-conference evening meet-up

Thursday 21 September 2017: registration and refreshments: 9:30am, conference: 10:00am – 5:00pm

For further information and to book tickets see

Lift to London- Request for help from Macclesfield Museums

Macclesfield Museums have two very small items to return to the Royal Collection in London (an incense burner and piece of coral). They are hoping that there is another North West museum already couriering something to London and perhaps the objects could hitch a lift to save the expense of a separate courier.  If you can help at all please contact Sue Hughes:

FREE Collections Trust Workshop: An introduction to Spectrum 5.0

Spectrum 5.0

10th November 2017

Lancashire Conservation Studios, Preston

Arrival from 10am

10.15am – 4pm

Click here to book a place.

Have a question about museum documentation or the Spectrum standard?

Due to popularity, Collections Trust are running the session again for the region. This session will explore the basics of museum documentation, its importance and how it can be approached by different organisations. We will explore museum documentation with a focus on accountability and Accreditation. Together, we will review the Spectrum Primary Procedures, required for Accreditation, identifying potential actions for your organisation.

Over the past year Collections Trust have been working on a revised edition of the Spectrum collections management standard, following extensive consultation with the museum sector. This new edition, Spectrum 5.0, will be launched in June 2017. Sarah Brown, Outreach Officer for Collections Trust, will introduce key changes within this standard. This workshop will therefore be useful for those new to the topic, as well as those looking for a refresher.

We request that attendees bring examples of their organisation’s documentation and/or documentation procedural manual, for discussion during the day.

Delegates will be encouraged to participate through discussions and activities, and there will be plenty of opportunity for questions throughout.

This session will be led by Sarah Brown, Outreach Officer for Collections Trust. Sarah joined Collections Trust in April 2016. Originally training as a conservator, Sarah has worked in a variety of collections management and care roles across the UK, including National Museums Scotland and Powell-Cotton Museum in Kent.

As part of Collections Trust’s Arts Council England funded Activity Plan, Sarah will be delivering around 100 events across the English regions, developed in collaboration with the Museum Development Network. The programme will be varied, with themes and delivery approach responding to local needs, ranging from digitisation and copyright to documentation planning and backlogs.

Learning Objectives:

  • The role of Collections Trust
  • Collections Trust resources
  • Basic museum documentation
  • The Spectrum standard within the context of Accreditation
  • The Spectrum Primary Procedures
  • Using and applying Spectrum within your organisation, including documentation procedural manuals.
  • Introducing changes and updates to the Spectrum standard.

Collections Trust Award 2017 – £2,000 prize

The Collections Trust Award recognises the achievements of those who manage the collections that lie at the heart of all museums. This year, Collections Trust is looking for great examples of collections management projects that demonstrate everyone in the museum pulling together. For the first time the award comes with £2,000 for the winning museum and an opportunity to present your project at the Collections Trust conference.

Entry is open to all Accredited UK museums and galleries. The closing date is Monday 4 September 2017.

For more information see


Job Opportunity: Cheshire West and Chester Council – deadline extended

Fundraising Officer – Cultural Services
 Grade 8 £25,694-£29,854 per annum
Job Type: Permanent
Hours Per Week: 37
New Deadline: Friday 4th August 2017

Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) brings a fresh and energetic approach to providing top quality services for its many customers and communities. West Cheshire is a place where everyone can Thrive – through core values of Teamwork, Honesty, Respect, Innovation, Value for Money and Empowerment.

The cultural services bring together museums, heritage, arts, events, archaeology, archives and local studies with the following shared vision:

“West Cheshire will be a place where culture transforms people’s lives. We will therefore create a Cultural Services that engage, inspire and enable people to express themselves and connect with others.”

CWAC are seeking a creative and ambitious fundraiser with a proven track record of generating income in the cultural sector. The successful candidate will lead the creation of a fundraising strategy, manage and develop existing funding relationships and help secure new sources of funding from a range of supporters. Identifying potential trusts and foundations and making funding applications in line with the priorities of the service to meet service targets will be an essential part of the role. The post will work with staff across the service and will need to be proactive and resourceful. Developing excellent relationships with external stakeholders will be critical and the postholder will need to be an outstanding communicator and networker.

For further details see 00006O&lang=en_GB

For any enquiries please email or call 01244 972503. Alternatively please see FAQs for candidates

Please quote job reference number WK 00006O in all correspondence.

Subject Specialist Network for Islamic Art & Material Culture support 2017-18

The specialist support scheme aims to provide regional museums with a toolkit to help them unlock the potential of their collections of Islamic Art & Material Culture (IAMC) and use them to engage with new and diverse audiences. It will provide a bespoke package of flexible, specialist and practical support through a scalable programme that can be tailored to the needs of individual institutions. At least one tangible output, such as a new display, knowledge sharing or outreach event should result from that specialist support.  Funding is provided through an ACE Resilience Fund Grant awarded to the SSN for Islamic Art & Material Culture (see: There is up to £5,075 available for support for each museum.

What collections areas are relevant?
The remit of the SSN is defined broadly and currently incorporates:

  • Historic collections of IAMC from regions where Islam is, or was, the dominant religion (e.g. Middle East, North Africa, Iran, Mughal India)
  • Contemporary art from the Middle East
  • Art and artefacts from other regions inspired by or with an association to the Middle East and dating from the 19th century to the present day

Eligibility in 2017-18
Applications this year are open to Accredited museums and those working towards Accreditation across England, but priority will be given to those in regions not already targeted by the scheme, namely those in the East of England and the East Midlands. Applications can be led by collections, curatorial and/or engagement and outreach staff.

How will the scheme operate?
The scheme is split into sections that should follow each other:

1) Visits by specialists to your institution for a minimum of one day, or a maximum of five days based on your requirements. Where necessary a freelance photographer can be provided to create digital images of up to 30 objects. Support and advice from an object conservator is also available. A report resulting from those visits will be produced by specialists and given to each institution. It is a key requirement that these visits actively involve members of staff, enabling them to become confident stewards of their IAMC collections.

2) Outputs should result from the knowledge and understanding of your collections developed from the specialist visits. Those outputs must be designed and selected by the participating institution but should focus on increasing public engagement with your IAMC collection and, where possible, on sharing your new found expertise with other intuitions in your region.. This second phase must be completed by end of March 2018.

Selection for the scheme is based on a written application. If your application is unsuccessful, you are still invited to access other support offered by the SSN in the form of study days and bursary scheme for museum professionals.

Application process
Applications deadline is 5pm on Monday 7th August 2017. Please apply by completing the on-line form available here:

For full information see If you have any queries please contact the SSN via with ‘Specialist Support Scheme’ clearly stated in the subject line.



Fostering Creativity in Children and Young People Through Education and Culture

Monday 4th – Tuesday 5th September
Durham University

The OECD Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI) and Durham University are hosting an international conference to discuss innovative approaches to equip young people with the creative skills required by tomorrow’s societies and strategies for scaling up and embedding innovations around creativity in education and culture. 

The conference builds on ongoing CERI work to improve our understanding of how creativity skills can be visibly and tangibly articulated by teachers, students and policy makers, and learnt and assessed as part of the curriculum. The meeting aims to bring together two types of practices around creativity: pedagogical practices in formal education, and cultural practices in out-of-school education or through partnerships between cultural agencies and schools.

This conference will bring together international speakers from the education world; from practicing teachers to academics in higher education institutions globally, alongside practitioners from within the cultural sector. Its format will be highly interactive, emphasising breakout sessions for discussion and exchange, and will mainly focus on practice.

To register your attendance please click here.