ICOM UK – British Council Global Travel Grant Scheme

Deadline: Friday 13 October 2017, 5pm

ICOM UK, with support from the British Council (BC), is offering a number of travel grants to support staff from regional and local UK museums (non-national museums) to travel internationally (beyond greater Europe) to develop mutually beneficial projects and partnerships.
The ICOM UK – BC Global Travel Grant Scheme will enable recipients to undertake an international visit to museums to meet with international colleagues and mutually share skills, expertise and experience.  The Global Travel Grant Scheme aims to support museums who are starting to develop mutually beneficial international projects and partnerships.  Priority will be given to museums whose staff have not previously undertaken international work.
Applications will be considered for grants of up to £1,500 per organisation or consortium. The total budget available for the Global Travel Grant Scheme in 2017-18 is £7,200. 
Please note that applicants will need to make their own travel, insurance and visa arrangements.  ICOM UK or the British council can supply a supporting letter where visa regulations require it.
Further information and an application form can be downloaded from the ICOM UK website here.  

Northern Museums Volunteer Pass 2018-2020 - Apply Today

Deadline: Monday 28 January 2018 

The Northern Museums Volunteer Pass is one of the largest Volunteer schemes in England with over 160 participating institutions and over 6,000 participating volunteers.    

It allows your volunteers to gain various benefits at other participating museums and is open to ALL accredited museums, or those working towards accreditation, in the North East, North West and Yorkshire and Humberside Museum Development regions. What's the benefit to your museum?

  • Raises awareness of your museum. As one museum said '[the passes] market what's on offer to future possible visitors' and another '[the pass] helps promote the region as a whole'
  • Learning Opportunities. Museums said the benefits were: 'Opportunity to see other museums. Can pick up and bring back ideas'. 'A chance to appreciate what other museums are doing and generate new ideas'. 'Way to keep up with what others are doing and reflect on our services'.
  • Networking and Benchmarking. Museums said the benefits were: 'to build understanding and make relationships to other museums. To see and learn from what other organisations are delivering. To be able to benchmark against what we deliver, and what we could deliver'. 'Being part of a museum community'.

To find out more, including details of how to join, see here.

If you have any questions about the scheme contact Gillian Waters at

New Charity Governance Code Seminar

Date: Thursday 19 October 2017

Venue: Bond Dickinson LLP, St Ann's, Newcastle  

Cost: There is no charge to attend the seminar. 

Booking: Register your place here 

The new Charity Governance Code was launched on Thursday 13 July. The revised code will be significantly different from the last edition published in 2010 and has already been endorsed by the Charity Commission who have indicated that they will be supporting the new code and will withdraw their own guidance on the Hallmarks of an Effective Charity.   

The new Code will adopt an 'apply or explain' approach, with larger charities encouraged to publish a statement in their annual report saying how they apply the Code and where they depart from its recommended practice. 

Bond Dickinson is delighted to present the Code to you, explain its new format and what is expected of your charity. Emma Moody, Head of Charities who works with charities in the North East and throughout the UK will then examine how you can use the Code to promote good practice and build a strong and effective board.     

Who should attend? 

This session is designed for charity Chief Executives, Heads of Governance, Chairs of Trustees, Clerks, Company Secretaries or any trustee who has responsibility for their organisation's governance. This session aims to provide you with a good understanding of the new Code, as well as supporting tools to enable to you confidently to assess your own charity's compliance.    

Arts Award in Museums

A new Arts Award in museums film 'Discover Three Ways' has been released, showing the different approach to Arts Award Discover taken by MK Gallery, The National Coal Mining Museum and Maidstone Museum. You can watch the film here.

MK Gallery offers Discover and Explore over three months as a key part of their family learning, encouraging participants to look out for arts forms wherever they go, take part in Saturday Studios at the gallery and meet their Associate Artists and find out about their work.  They signpost other cultural opportunities across the city and keep the work load of the adviser light touch through a one hour meet up on the first Saturday of the month.

The National Coal Mining Museum has worked with Wakefield Music Hub to develop a two day transition project, where children from six local primaries meet and find out about the art and culture in mining communities and use this as inspiration to make music.

Maidstone Museum invented Discover in a Day and the film shows a World War Two themed day, with pupils from a local primary school finding out about war artists, trying out some of the tools and techniques they used and finding inspiration in the Regimental Museum that they’ll take back to school to build on.

To find out more about Arts Award in the region visit the Culture Bridge North East website here.

Arts&Heritage Launch Meeting Point2

Arts&Heritage has announced the launch of the Meeting Point2 commissions. 10 artists have been selected to work in partnership with museums in the North of England, each creating a new piece of work in response to the museums and their collections.

The Meeting Point2 commissions will take place between August 2017 – March 2018 and include two in the North East region:

This Liberty by Matt Stokes in collaboration with Richard Dawson at Hexham Old Gaol, Northumberland, 22 August – 30 November 2017.

Refuge: Ropner’s Ghost Ship by Stephen Dixon and Alison Welsh at Preston Park Museum, Stockton on Tees, 3 October - 12 November 2017
The programme builds on a successful pilot, which took place in 2016 and saw artists working with museums across the North East and Yorkshire.
Further details, including the full list of commissions, can be found on the Arts&Heritage website here

Review of the Museum Accreditation Scheme and how it will affect your museum

Arts Council England and the UK Partners have started to undertake a 'light touch' review of the Accreditation Scheme. This is not a major redesign of the Scheme, but will look at areas such as the returns and application process, scalability and communications. At the moment the returns process for museums due to submit in 2017 has been paused, but new applications, provisional Accreditation reviews and significant change reviews are still being undertaken.

The review is planned to be complete in time for the 30th Anniversary of the Accreditation Scheme, in Spring 2018.

There will be an opportunity to contribute to the review as it progresses, however if you have any comments in the meantime please email

For those museums who aren't directly affected, please continue to work as normal and ensure that your policies and plans are revised and in date as they need to be.

More information about the review and its scope can be found on the Arts Council website here. For the latest news on Accreditation please also keep an eye on our website here.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Emma Chaplin, Accreditation Adviser for the North East, or Sarah Carr, Museum Development Manager,

Guidelines for the Care of Larger & Working Historic - Consultation & Peer Review

The Association of British Transport & Engineering Museums (ABTEM) have announced that their draft Guidelines for the Care of Larger and Working Historic Objects are now available for comment. A consultation draft is available here and comments should be completed on their feedback form (available here). The deadline for comments is Friday 29 September 2017

The guidelines will be widely publicised and promoted, including through a launch event and programme of seminars scheduled at the beginning of 2018.
All completed forms should be returned to Efstathios Tsolis at the following address

TWAM to Provide Museum Development Support for 2018-22

We are delighted to announce that Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM) has been awarded funding from Arts Council England (ACE) to provide Museum Development support to the region for 2018-22.  This announcement was made as Arts Council England (ACE) published their National Portfolio for the next four years. 

The funding will enable us to continue our commitment to provide a comprehensive programme of support to help museums deliver excellence in the management of collections, to understand and respond to the needs of their audiences and to be resilient and sustainable.

In all, 831 organisations were announced as part of the portfolio and will receive a total of £1.6 billion over four years, for 844 projects. For further information about the awards nationally, please visit the ACE website here

Regional museum awards are outlined below:

  1. Beamish Museum - £1,747,104
  2. The Bowes Museum -  £1,471,228
  3. Seven Stories, The National Centre for Children's Books - £2,310,408
  4. Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums - £12,547,716
  5. Woodhorn Charitable Trust - £800,000
  6. Stockton Borough Council - Tees Valley Museum Group - £1,500,000

Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM) was also successful in its applications for Bridge grant funding for 2018-22. Further information about this award can be found on the TWAM website here.

MA Appoints New Member Representative for the North East

Hannah Peaden from Auckland Castle has been appointed as the new Museums Association (MA) member representative for the North East.

The MA appointed 14 new member representatives in total across the UK. Sharon Heal, the MA's director, says: "We are delighted to welcome an incredibly talented and diverse new cohort of representatives, and look forward to working closely with them to realise the MA's work across the UK's nations and regions."

Representatives play a vital role in the MA’s engagement with its members. They represent the MA to its members and to local organisations and contacts, and represent members’ views to the MA, providing vital feedback. They also help to keep members in the local area up-to-date with MA policies and activities, help to organise Members' Meetings and other informal meetings, promote MA membership, and communicate through social media and the website.

For further information about the appointments, please visit the MA website here

North East Volunteer Collects Prestigious Award

Jane Mann from Bailiffgate Museum has been announced as joint winner of the prestigious 'Volunteer of the Year Award' at this year's Museums + Heritage Awards. The award celebrates the incredible contribution of volunteers and Jane was selected for her commitment to Bailiffgate Museum, a volunteer-led museum based in Alnwick, Northumberland. The win was announced at a glittering ceremony held on May 17 in the Historic Staterooms of London’s 8 Northumberland Avenue. Further information about the awards can be found on the Museums + Heritage website here

Collections Trust Workshops

We are working with Collections Trust to provide a series of workshops supporting collections management in North East museums. The sessions are suitable for museum staff and volunteers and details of forthcoming events will be added to our events page here.

Events can be booked by emailing Anna McNab