Latest News

SWFed Conference & AGM 2017: Partnerships in Practice – Exeter, 5-6 July (save the date)

After the success of our bumper two-day edition conference last year, we’re excited to announce that we will be running another two-day conference this year. It will once again be held at the University of Exeter, which provided excellent facilities last year.


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Posted February 14, 2017 at 4:19 pm

Apply for the Textile Society Museum, Archive and Conservation Award 2017

The Textile Society offers an annual bursary award of up to £5,000 for a textile related project within the museum, archive or conservation sector in the UK.

The Award is designed to support textile related projects within a museum, archive, or conservation studio for exhibition, publication or conservation that will help achieve greater awareness and access for the public.

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Posted March 27, 2017 at 2:49 pm

Museums Day set to help advocate for museums

A day of nationwide political advocacy to promote the work of UK museums has been announced by the Museums Association (MA) and National Museum Directors Council (NMDC).

Museums Day will take place on 15 May and will be a focal point for all museums to engage with local and national politicians to promote the impact that museums have across social, cultural, economic, scientific and educational spheres.

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Posted March 14, 2017 at 5:36 pm

Transport Trust awards open for nominations

The Transport Trust is inviting nominations for awards to help individuals and groups who are working hard to preserve items of importance to the Nation’s transport heritage. Awards are made to transport restoration projects which underway but not completed and would benefit from financial assistance.

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Posted March 13, 2017 at 10:41 pm

UK Digital Strategy launched to improve access to culture

The Government’s UK Digital Strategy has been launched, setting out commitments to culture and heritage. The strategy includes plans to ‘accelerate the digitisation of culture, and make culture accessible for all’. It pledges to:

  • Undertake a Digital Culture project to look at how arts and cultural organisations can make the most of the opportunities offered by digital technologies and how to make the UK one of the world’s leading countries for public collections content
  • Within the context of the DCMS Museums Review, consider how museums in England can use digital technology to improve audience engagement with collections
  • Undertake a major enhancement and rationalisation of heritage records nationally and locally, including an update and improvement of Historic England’s customer-facing IT


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Posted March 13, 2017 at 10:20 pm

Fit for the Future regional networking event – Castle Drogo, 30 March

Keeping out the Cold: Fit for the Future regional networking afternoon
Castle Drogo, 30 March 2017, 12.30-4pm

Fit for the Future Network is a solution-based network for practitioners who want to reduce their organisation’s energy bills and better manage environmental impacts. Through sharing and collaboration, the network enables practitioners to move forward with energy efficiency and generation projects. Our 80 strong membership includes the Universities of Oxford and Chester, National Trust, WWT, English Heritage, the Royal Household, RSPB, Cancer Research UK and Tate.

Fit for the Future are inviting you to join environmental practitioners at their exciting regional event. This is an opportunity to hear inspiring case studies on topics around renewable energy generation and energy efficiency from Fit for the Future members in your region. (more…)

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Posted March 13, 2017 at 9:32 am

Arts Marketing Association programmes open for applications

The Arts Marketing Association (AMA) has announced that it is currently taking applications for two exciting programmes. Both programmes – Future Proof Museums and the Digital Marketing Academy – are funded by Arts Council England and have already had great impact through previous cohorts of participants.

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Posted March 12, 2017 at 9:59 pm

HLF makes £3million commitment to future UK Cities of Culture

Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has announced funding of £3m to the holder of the title UK City of Culture from 2021 onwards.

The culture minister Matt Hancock recently announced that 11 areas from across the UK have registered bids. Wells is the candidate city in the South West for 2021, and other bidders include Coventry, Hereford, Paisley, Perth, Portsmouth, St Davids and the Hundred of Dewisland, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland, Swansea, and Warrington.

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Posted March 12, 2017 at 9:20 pm

South West AMA Support Group Meeting

The Museums Association (MA) doesn’t currently have a AMA Support Group Co-ordinator – when this is the case the MA host a meeting. The idea being that there is still an opportunity to meet up, discuss progress and problems; we can look at an ethical dilemma and also run a Q&A surgery.

The next AMA Support Group meeting will be at the ss Great Britain on Monday 24th April 2017.

There is flexibility on the timing of the day for those travelling from a long distance, e.g Cornwall. As such you can arrive and leave at whatever time makes sense but the core time will be 11:30 – 14:30.

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Posted March 6, 2017 at 10:45 am

Stephen Clews (BANES) becomes Museums Association Benevolent Fund Trustee

Stephen Clews has joined the MA Benevolent Fund as a Trustee after its Chairman Brian Hayton stepped down.

Clews, the Roman Baths and Pump Room manager and public services team leader at Bath and North East Somerset Council, joins alongside Jonathan Wilson, the deputy chief executive of Black Country Living Museum.

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Posted March 1, 2017 at 6:13 pm

SWFed Spring Forum, 4 May 2017 – Save the Date

We are delighted to announce that our 2017 Spring Forum will be on 4th May, in partnership with The Flourish Project.

It will be a day of sharing learning from The Flourish project on the subjects of:

  • Audience Development
  • Capital Development Activity
  • Organisational Development ( governance and volunteering)
  • Financial Development (income generation / fundraising)

There will also be a presentation on the Future Museums project. The event will be hosted at Torquay Museum.

Tickets are free for SWFed members. Booking and further details will be available soon.

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Posted February 21, 2017 at 11:45 am