To date a total of eleven museums professionals have been supported by the Headley Fellowships scheme, with a further eleven to be announced in the third round of the programme later in 2020.

The four curators to benefit from the latest Headley Fellowships programme:

Jody Joy, senior curator at the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in Cambridge
“The Headley Fellowship is such a great scheme because it gives curators who would never otherwise have had the opportunity in their day-to-day work, to fully study the collections in their care.”

Martin Pel, curator of fashion and textiles at Brighton Museum
“The Headley Fellowship gives me the resources to research the contribution of Martin Battersby, who essentially created the Brighton Museum we see today. It will also allow the public, through talks, re-display of objects, and presence on social media, an understanding of Battersby’s legacy.”

Georgina Grant, Senior Curator at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust
“The Headley Fellowship will provide me with career and skills development and a unique opportunity for in-depth research and essential collections work.”

Natalie Murray, Collections and Exhibitions Manager at Barnsley Museums
“I feel elated to have been awarded the Headley Fellowship and to have so much time and resources to focus on one area of our collection. I’m looking forward to the in-depth research and to making connections with other collections and organisations.”

The three-year programme was launched in 2018 to give curators the opportunity to immerse themselves in research focused on their institution’s collections.

An overall £600,000 in funding is made available through the Fellowships, allowing institutions to back-fill mid-career and experienced curators’ posts in order to facilitate participants to take time away from their day-to-day responsibilities and focus on collections research. Each fellow also receives up to £5,000 for travel, courses and learning opportunities.

With this support, Helen McLeod from the Headley Trust says, “they can take time away from the growing day-to-day pressures of their roles to focus on research that will lead to new ways to engage the public with their collections and make connections with their peers in the museum world.”

A recipient of a Headley Fellowship in 2019, Joanne Anderson, curator at the Great North Museum Hancock, said: “It cannot be overstated how much of a fantastic opportunity my Headley Fellowship has been.

“For the first time, I have been able to study in depth a wonderful collection. In the process, I have enhanced existing skills and developed new ones”.

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