South West Museum Development exists to support museums and heritage organisations to develop and improve across all areas of their operation. We provide trusted, local and relevant development services to support museum and heritage organisations to improve, innovate, collaborate and celebrate. We understand the specific context and priorities of museums at both a regional and local level.

We work with partners to maximise our impact and to advocate the value of museums and heritage widely on their behalf.

The national Museum Development programme was established in 2006. The National Development Agency for museums, Arts Council England, directs Museum Development funding in England through a network of nine regional providers. This funding is focused on building the resilience and ambition of non-national museums across England within the Accreditation Scheme and those not already in receipt of funding as one of the Arts Council’s National Portfolio Organisations.

South West Museum Development is part of a larger network of Museum Development Providers across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. You can find out more about National Museum Development UK on their website.

South West Museum Development is  based within Bristol Culture and Creative Industries and hosted by Bristol City Council.