Final Museum News…

Dear All,

This is my last edition of Museum News. Thank you so much for all your support of the last 6 years. I have really enjoyed working with you.

If you are able to come along to my leaving drinks tomorrow, I will be in the Slug and Lettuce in Chelmsford from midday onwards.

Going forward, a new Museum Development Officer post will be hosted at Colchester and Ipswich Museums, funded by SHARE and Museums Essex. They have just started to recruit and information is available here:


The Essex Network for Art and Cultural Tourism is a strong network of cultural organisations from around the county. The meetings are regularly attended by representatives of NLHF, ACE and Visit Essex. If your museum is interested in attending or wants to know more, please contact

HEG Update

An emergency meeting of the Heritage Education Group took place in December to discuss the sustainability of the group. Sadly I was unable to attend due to a family emergency, but I had hoped that the group would make a decision as to the organisation’s future. Unfortunately, in my absence, no decision was made. I have therefore made the very difficult decision to wind the group up. Given the declining numbers and the growth of the LCEPs, the group is not sustainable in its current form, although I have recommended that the next MDO establish a virtual forum for exchanging ideas/collaborations etc and perhaps draw the group together annually.

However, I have also spoken to my equivalents in the neighbouring counties and they are able to open up invitations to Essex museums if you would like to join their learning networks. Contact details are:




Update from SHARE

“ACE’s Museum Development Programme is currently being evaluated, to assess its reach and impact. I would be grateful if you or someone from your museum could complete the short survey detailed below – it should take no more than 10 minutes to complete.

Continued funding from ACE is dependent on demonstrating our impact and value for money, so we need every as many museums which have engaged with SHARE to respond to respond. For the purposes of this survey ‘museum development’ includes all engagement with SHARE or county MDOs, as our contributory funding to the latter is counted as part of the wider Museum Development Programme. The deadline is Friday 14th February”

 Events and Training

Back to the future: the impact of science across Essex, An Essex Record Office Conference, Saturday 7th March, 9.30am-4.00pm, £30

Over the centuries science has had a massive impact on the residents of Essex. Join us for a day of talks celebrating some of the everyday developments in technology that have transformed lives in the past and how we live today.

With talks looking at everything from the basics such as water purification and supply, brewing, gas and cloth manufacture, to the cutting edge of fibre optic technology and advancement in archaeological techniques. This will be a day full of interest and a celebration of science and scientific advance across the county.

Call for Papers

Decolonisation + Democratisation is a national conference exploring how heritage and arts organisations are engaging and sharing ownership with communities.

“Have you got big ideas about how to transform the face of heritage and the arts? Are there some simple steps to changing how we think about and work with communities that can have significant impacts?

If so, we want to hear from you. We are looking for submissions from all career levels and all sizes of organisation.

We are particularly keen to hear examples of:

  • Museums working in partnership, especially ones involving organisations/ individuals outside of the cultural sector
  • Museums being used for non-traditional activities
  • Ways of enhancing collections knowledge through partnership work
  • “Failures” as well as success stories, which can help others learn
  • When: Thursday 10th September, 2020
  • Where: Colchester Castle, Essex

Where presentations involve community partners, we would love to hear from both parties and have bursaries to support community participation.

If you are unable to get to Colchester in person, please do still get in touch as we would love to explore remote contributions, such as via Skype.

We are looking for contributions for:

  • Workshop activities (30 mins)
  • Short presentations (20 mins)

If you have something to share, we’d love to hear from you. Email us with:

  • Name(s) and contact details, including organisation
  • Summary and title of your idea (no more than 300 words), including structure
  • What you expect delegates to take away from your session

Submissions to be emailed to Ben.Paites by 9am on Monday 30th March. All submissions will be considered and we shall inform successful applicants by Friday 24th April. All presenters will receive free entry to the conference. (NB: the cost for delegates will be £25 for the day).”