We are pleased to announce that following a competitive round of applications, we have awarded nearly £58,000 in Small Grants to 15 museums across the South West. The Small Grants for Change and Improvement are made possible thanks to support from Art Fund and Arts Council. We know that for many museums a small grant can be a powerful catalyst for regeneration and this fund is designed with exactly this in mind. 

Museums were able to apply for up to £10,000 per museum organisation earlier this year, and we received so many great applications. This year’s Small Grants will be funding a wide range of projects from energy audits to family engagement activities. The projects funded will support at least nine freelance contracts and provide numerous other opportunities for suppliers local to the museums.

Some of the successful museums include:

  • Young Gallery, Wiltshire
  • Glenside Hospital Museum, Bristol
  • Somerset Coalfield Life at Radstock Museum, North East Somerset
  • Bath Literary and Scientific Institution, Bath
  • Combe Martin Museum, Devon

Glenside Hospital Museum has been granted £4500 to bring in professional expertise to support their collections review, with the aim of identifying core items to enrich the visitor experience, engage a wider online audience and further understanding of mental health care.

Combe Martin Museum in Devon will be using their £1290 grant to support the exhibition of six indentures, featuring children of the Combe Martin area, as well as the development of interpretation and community engagement activities to improve access to the collection.

Bath Literary and Scientific Institution in Bath has received £6990 to develop the storage and display of their fascinating archive of ancient maps and plans and make them more accessible to visitors.

All of the successful projects will be vital to driving change and improvement not only in their respective museums but also in their communities, contributing to the local economy and placemaking. Jenni Orme on the Grants Team for South West Museum Development, explains:

“It is essential for museums to change and adapt if they are to engage new audiences, look after their collections, and grow as a thriving community asset. We are glad to support these projects which will have a positive impact across the South West”.

If you’re feeling inspired take a look at our grants page or sign up to our newsletter to find out about future grant schemes.