British Museum

DCMS to produce partnership framework for nationals in September

Patrick Steel, 09.05.2018
Framework will see objects, skills and expertise shared with regional museums
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is in talks with the National Museum Directors’ Council and Arts Council England (ACE) over plans for a partnership framework for national museums, setting out a strategy for loans and skills-sharing, which is due to be published in September.

The framework was one of several recommendations in the Mendoza Review, an independent report on the English museum sector published last November.

The report found that since 2007/08, funding from the DCMS, awarded mainly to national museums, remained almost flat (falling by 1% – or 15% in real terms), while local authority museum funding declined by 22% (31% in real terms).

The report stated: “The review team recognises the excellent work already taking place, but would like it to be more strategic, to ensure audiences and museums outside London get what they need from the nationals.”

An NMDC spokeswoman said: “We are keen to ensure that the huge amount of existing work that national museums do is better communicated both to the sector and to government but recognise that it could be more strategic.

“This work is not just about loans, but also about sharing skills and expertise, among many other things.

“Development of the framework will include consultation with national museums, ACE and the wider sector, aiming for publication in September.

“Separate to the Mendoza Review recommendations, the strategic review of national museums made a recommendation to ‘enable more effective, strategic and frequent’ loans from national museums.

“NMDC is already working with the Touring Exhibitions Group on the Preparing to Borrow programme to improve lending across the sector, and we are currently revising our 2003 guidelines on lending to bring them up to date and make them relevant for all museums, not just nationals.”


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Jonathan Gammond
Access , Wrexham County Borough Museum
09.05.2018, 22:08
Do you know if the DCMS is including work across the whole UK in this review or is England only? Presumably the former, unless the British Museum is planning a name change!!!
Patrick Steel
Website Editor, Museums Association
15.05.2018, 10:54
I approached DCMS for comment on this piece, but they haven't responded. If and when they do I will update the article.