South Western Federation of Museums and Art Galleries

About Us

Our Vision

A flourishing and confident heritage community in the South West

Our Mission

Creating opportunities to connect and inspire the heritage community across the South West, for the benefit of organisations and their audiences.

What We Do

We promote a culture of shared learning across the region by connecting members with each each other, with relevant partners, and with the wider sector.

Members develop skills from our events, partner training programmes, and by being directed to other CPD opportunities in the region and beyond.

Resources and information provided through our website, eBulletins, newsletters and social media give members and others in the sector guidance, ideas, advice and the latest news.

We champion the value and benefits of the South West’s museums, art galleries and heritage sites.

We provide an umbrella body for regional subject specialist groups – currently, the SW Implement Petrology Group

Who can join?

Anyone organisation or person working in or with the heritage sector in the South West of England. This includes:

  • Museums
  • Art galleries
  • Heritage sites
  • Staff (paid or volunteer)
  • Self-employed
  • Supporters of the sector

Visit the Membership page for more information.


Our Board has at least one representative from each county and an observer each from Arts Council England and the SW Museum Development Partnership. We work with representatives from the National Trust, the Museums Association, the British Association of Friends of Museums (BAfM) and the Association of Independent Museums (AIM). The committee meets every quarter with full membership meetings at the AGM in early summer.

You can read our business plan by clicking here and our forward plan by clicking here.

Our Rules & Memorandum and Articles of Association can be downloaded here:

Representing museums in the South West

The Federation represents the views and interests of museums in the South West to a range of bodies including:

  • Arts Council England (ACE)
  • SW Museum Development Partnership
  • Major Partner Museums: Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery and Cornwall Museums Partnership
  • Association of Independant Museums
  • British Association of Friends of Museums
  • National Trust
  • Museums Association

Funders and partners

We would like to thank the following funders and partners who have enabled us to carry out our work:

  • SW Museum Development Partnership
  • Tickbox Marketing
  • The National Archives
  • GEM
  • CBA
  • Ecotricity
SWFed Conference 2018

Confronting the Challenges: Visits & Collections

Come to the SWFed Conference in Exeter on 4 & 5 July to gain ideas and knowledge on the topics of visits and collections.

Click for info