Category Archives: Collections Trust

National Motor Museum wins 2017 Collections Trust Award

The National Motor Museum Trust at Beaulieu has won the 2017 Collections Trust Award for its Keep CALM and STEAM Ahead project. The award recognises the achievements of those who manage museum collections – the teams who are often behind the scenes and whose work can go unnoticed.

This year the award celebrates projects that show what can be achieved when the governing body, staff and volunteers in a museum work collaboratively to tackle a collections management challenge. With the theme of Pulling Together, the award comes with a prize of £2,000 for the first time this year.

Generously funded by the Arts Council England Designation Development Fund, the Keep CALM project began in July 2016 and concludes in March 2018. It has provided a much-needed opportunity for the National Motor Museum to focus on aspects of stewardship, which had become a priority. Importantly, the project has been devised to create impact beyond collections management, providing new opportunities for people to engage with the collections, including activities for families, schools and colleges.

Costumes group (1)

Keep CALM has extended the use of the museum’s CALM collections management system and supported review and research on under-used parts of the collections. Improved documentation has enhanced collaboration between collections and strengthened team-working. Unlocking information and encouraging working across departments is supporting the development of new initiatives for visitors to Beaulieu. The project is building on the Museum’s Education Service by generating new programmes linked to STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) in response to National Curriculum changes.

A creative take on STEAM has also been adopted, using the newly researched and recorded material to inspire a range of lively Automotive Steampunk-themed activities, which explore the collections in imaginative ways. Students from the Costume and Performance Design course at the Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) researched key cars and collections material to inspire the creation of nine Automotive Steampunk costumes. These striking costumes, which were on display in the museum until recently, have been viewed by thousands of visitors who were also able to dress up in Steampunk style with special clothing provided for photo opportunities. The project has also enabled the museum to make connections with the wonderfully creative Portsmouth And Southampton Time-travelling Steampunks (PASTS) group.

Andrea Bishop, Director of Collections at the National Motor Museum, said:

“The Keep CALM project has been aptly named, since it has challenged us to change the way we work and manage collections behind the scenes, standardising practice to improve exchange of ideas and information. We are now beginning to see the benefits of that legacy for our audiences and I am grateful to Arts Council England for having confidence in the value of this project for the museum and its users.”

To find out more about the Keep CALM and STEAM Ahead project, see http://www.nationalmotormuseum.org.uk/ACE_funding.

 

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ABTEM TO UNDERTAKE SCOPING WORK TO UPDATE MGC STANDARDS

Supported by Arts Council England (ACE) Subject Specialist Network (SSN) funding, ABTEM has recently commissioned museum consultant Rob Shorland-Ball to carry out a Scoping Study on the feasibility of developing and updating the MGC 1994 Standard 4: Standards in the Museum Care of Larger & Working Objects.

Many people will know, or have used these standards, which provided advice and information on the management and conservation of industrial, transport and engineering collections and despite being long out of print, they remain an important source of information. The original 1994 document was augmented by the 1997 ‘Larger & Working Objects: A Guide to their preservation and care’ also published by MGC also now not available in print. The Collections Trust published Larger & Working Objects: a guide to standards in their preservation and care in 2009 but that, too, is now out-of-date and neither it, nor MGC Standard 4, was very user-friendly for private collectors, preservers and operators of larger objects.

ABTEM is keen to obtain the views of as many people as possible and so are organising two open discussion meetings to gain further feedback. These are being held on:

  • Tuesday 19 May, Museum of Liverpool – afternoon 13.30 – 16.00
  • Wednesday 27 May, London Museum of Water & Steam – afternoon 13.30 – 16.00

All are welcome at these free events – if you would like to attend, please contact Rob Shorland-Ball for further details at:  robsb@wfmyork.demon.co.uk or by telephone on (01904) 632751

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Free seminars from Collections Trust around England

AIM Blog for independent museums and heritage sites

The Collections Trust Seminars

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The Collections Trust, with funding and support from Arts Council England, has developed a series of free seminars that will provide you with the know-how to improve the use of technology in your museum and assist you with your collections development strategy.

The first seminar will take place in London on 6 October 2014. Book your free place now!

Who should attend

The seminars are aimed at Collections Management professionals and volunteers who work in small and medium-sized UK museums that are Accredited or that are working towards Accreditation.

Benefits of attending

  • Receive practical advice and support
  • Benefit from the experience of others
  • Gain insights that will help with Accreditation
  • Discover a range of useful resources
  • Add to your CPD
  • Network with colleagues

Dates and venues

6 October 2014 Science Museum, London Book…

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