Posts Tagged ‘North West’

NEWS: Introducing New NWFed Board Member Rachel Mulhearn

Sunday, February 21st, 2016

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During the last North West Federation of Museum’s board meeting, held on 15 January 2016 (full meeting minutes available here), we welcomed some new Board members including Rachel Mulhearn who is the Director of Rachel Mulhearn Associates, a cultural heritage consultancy which works across the UK.

Previous to setting up Mulhearn Associates in 2012, Rachel was Director of Merseyside Maritime Museum for 24 years. Also a board member of the Daniel Adamson Preservation Society, Rachel brings extensive experience of working in the North West arts and heritage sector to the Board.  On being appointed Rachel explained:

“My role as a NWFED board member allows me the opportunity to work with colleagues across the region. We have serious challenges, but we also have great talent and skills. I want to bring along my experience of working in museums and use the creativity and innovation out there to work through difficulties, and go from strength to strength as a sector.”

When appointing board members, it is important to us that those appointed are  prepared to oversee and support the work of the NWFED while acting as ambassadors for the organisation.  We are excited to be working with Rachel and feel her experience and expertise will make a great edition to organisation.

COMMENT: Inquiry – Hard Times for the UK’s Regional Museums

Monday, November 23rd, 2015

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In an article originally published in Apollo magazine’s September issue, Jake Wakefield examined the numerous issues facing our regional galleries and museums.  As an organisation supporting and championing the interests of museums and galleries across the North West region, we at the NWFed were interested to read what Jack had to say on the key issues he felt regional museums and galleries are facing in the current economic climate.

Highlighting the importance of our regional collections as the first major creative influence to numerous local school children, families and other community members which has included people such as L.S.Lowry, whose artistic love for D.G Rossetti’s portraits he encountered in Manchester Art Gallery perhaps influenced his decision to become an artist. This importance our regional collections play within their local and wider communities is something not reflected in the cuts to their core funding which continues at a rapid pace.

Regional museums and galleries are consistently being asked to do more to help sustain their own sources of income – improve their cafes and shops, raise money by licencing their collections, renting out their spaces, applying for private grants, encouraging donations – but all of these actions together only make up a small percentage of the income they need to sustain their function within the local community.

National collections in London seem to have greater access to private funding, so how do we draw funders away from London and into our regional museums and galleries? As Jack states when closing his article, “small acts of philanthropy will make a much bigger difference outside London”; but how do we make this happen?

We welcome your comments and thoughts on this issue below.

To read the full article, Click Here

NWFED NEWS: New Partnership with Museum Development North West

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

The North West Federation of Museums (NWFED) is really pleased announce that we will be working closely with Museum Development North West (MDNW) to assist in the their Museum Development programme for 2015-18.

As part of MDNW’s wide ranging programme of support for the sector, the NWFED has been asked to take the lead with one part of their Museum Development Plan focusing on the Arts Council’s Goal 4 – leadership and the museum workforce’s diversity and skills. Through the development and delivery of a ‘Support Our Skills (SOS)’ programme for volunteers and staff in museums, we will be able to provide tailor made support for the huge number of volunteers in museums across the North West, whilst opening up the programme to NWFED members and other museum staff.

This year the NWFED will carrying out research to find out what volunteers working in our sector would like a training and development programme to involve and what they would find beneficial to their career development. We will be speaking to volunteers across the region through an online survey, various focus groups, site visits and more to find out what the sector needs.  The new programme will then be launched in April 2016 and will run for two years. At this stage there are no concrete ideas of what the programme will include, as it will be shaped by the conversations we have with people across the region.

If you are a volunteer, or would like volunteers in your museum to be involved and have a say in the development of this programme, then please do get in touch with the NWFED. We will be sharing details of the different ways that you can provide ideas and feedback shortly via our website and newsletter.

This is a very exciting time for NWFED and we look forward to working with MDNW over the coming years.

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Katy Ashton:  Chair of NWFED and Director of the People’s History Museum, Manchester