Miners strike T-shirt (c) Doncaster Museums

Apply now for the Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund

Patrick Steel, 25.07.2017
First round application deadline is 6 September
Initial applications to the 14th round of the Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund, which helps museums develop collections to achieve social impact, will be accepted by the Museums Association (MA) until the deadline of 6 September.

This round will see £600,000 of grants available for applications for funding from £20,000 to £120,000, for projects that will last up to three years.

In the first instance, applicants should call or email to discuss their idea with Sally Colvin, the MA’s programmes manager, or Sarah Briggs, the MA’s collections development officer.

Initial applications will be shortlisted by the end of September and informed whether or not they can proceed to a full application, which must be completed by 18 October. The successful applicants will be announced in early December.

“This is the second funding round with the fund’s updated criteria, explicitly looking at the dual challenge of collections work and social impact,” says Colvin. “We had some brilliant projects in the last round, and look forward to hearing ideas for innovative collections work with social impact in this round.”

Doncaster Heritage Services successfully bid for £78,850 in the last funding round. The funds will enable the service to build skills and raise aspirations in Doncaster's ex-mining communities using Doncaster Museums' mining collections to inspire intergenerational collaboration and encourage community cohesion.

“The funding is going to be transformative for the service,” says Jude Holland, the project manager for Doncaster 1914-18. “The Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund will help us to get an understanding of the rich nature of the collections, transform the museum’s displays, and make our approach to the collection more people-focused.

“It will also help achieve an impact in parts of the community that might not otherwise engage with the collection. The areas we are focusing on are in the highest 10% of the index of national deprivation.

“I would definitely recommend other museums with a good idea to apply to the fund. It is a really straightforward application process, with support from the MA along the way. And the support network with other recipients means that there is a sustained impact through sharing and learning, and receiving advice and guidance.”

Links and downloads

Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund