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We announce successful recipients of the Renaissance Strategic support and Designation development funds

  • Date: 5 March 2014
  • Area: National
'A Mermaid' by John William Waterhouse, at the Royal Academy of Arts

'A Mermaid' by John William Waterhouse, at the Royal Academy of Arts. Credit: John Hammond

We have now announced the successful funding bids in the latest rounds of the Renaissance programmes for museums: the Strategic support fund and the Designation development fund.  

Over seventy museums from across England have been successful in receiving funding across the country, as well as several important national initiatives led by organisations like the Museums Association and the International Council of Museums UK. Projects vary greatly, from the collection of the Swindon Museum & Art Gallery relocating to updated and more sustainable venues, to the Royal Academy of Arts’ conservation of a historical cartoon in advance of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

57 organisations have received a total of £5,715,338 through the Renaissance Strategic support fund for the period 2014/15. 18 projects will receive funding through the Designation development fund, in which the Arts Council is investing £700,000 in 2014-15 and £700,000 in 2015-16.

Both the Renaissance Strategic support fund and Designation development funds are part of the Arts Council’s total investment approach to museums for 2015-18.

Strategic support fund

The Strategic support fund aims to support excellence, and the potential for excellence, in a wide range of museums across England.

Projects receiving an award include: 

  • Pennine Lancashire Museums, a partnership of nine museums working across six North West organisations, aim to work collaboratively to develop their work force and brand. They will use the funding to improve areas of service delivery including collections care, audience development and marketing.
  • Led by Wheal Martyn Museum, a consortium of Cornish museums is collaborating to improve the sustainability of the museum infrastructure in the county. Development of fundraising platforms, new business models and commercial activity will form the basis of the project.
  • The Museums Association will use this funding to develop a one year pilot which aims to equip 16 museum professionals with the skills needed for the changing economic and social environment of the sector, whilst providing a model for a new development approach to diversifying the workforce within the sector.

See the full list of successful projects here.

Designation development fund

The Designation development fund aims to help support projects that ensure the long-term sustainability of Designated museum collections, in order to maximise their value to the public through improved understanding and engagement.

Examples of funded projects include:

  • The National Football Museum, one of the youngest museums to receive this recognition, will utilise their unique sports collection to develop an online community amongst fans to explore the history of the game.
  • The Royal Academy of Arts’ project focuses on the ‘cartoon’ for Daniel Maclise’s historical painting ‘The Meeting of Wellington and Blucher after the Battle of Waterloo’. The Royal Academy will conserve, research, digitise, display and interpret the cartoon in time for the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo in 2015.
  • Culture Coventry aims to catalogue and digitise the Rootes Archive. The Rootes Group was the third largest producer of cars and lorries in Britain, therefore the group’s archive is already an important resource for automotive and social historians. This project will make it accessible to schools, academics and students, as well as anyone interested in the history of the motor manufacturing industry in the UK.

See all the 18 projects that will receive funding here.

Further details on funding for museums across England will be announced later in the year.

Useful links

Find out more about our overall investment plans for museums 2015-18

Read more about the Strategic support fund and the Designation development fund

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