Policy column

Alistair Brown, Issue 119/12, 01.12.2019
Be an advocate for the sector
The election is a huge moment in British politics, determining the direction of Brexit, public funding and a whole lot more. It is also a real opportunity for us to make the case for investment in museums across the UK. 

The sector has struggled with austerity and Brexit – and now we need bold action to ensure that museums can fulfil their potential. 

The Museums Association has produced a Museums Manifesto that sets out a plan for the next government, including increased investment in local museums; ambitious funding to improve our vital maintenance; support for wellbeing, engagement and digital projects; a Brexit deal that works for museums (or no Brexit at all); protecting free entry; embedding Exhibitions Tax Relief; simplifying business rates; and fair settlements for local government and devolved administrations so they can invest in their museum services. 

If the next government acts on the manifesto, the sector will be in a better place to deliver for our communities. But we can get the change we need only if museums are on the political agenda – which means we must all be advocates for our sector. 

As long as you are not endorsing a political party in your professional capacity, there is nothing to prevent you from sharing information on your museum’s needs and those of the sector. 

It is vital that we share our message, so use the Museums Manifesto to influence local candidates and voters – and help museums to flourish. 

Alistair Brown is the policy manager at the Museums Association