Thirty-one museums across England are to receive a slice of £48 million in new funding as part of the Government’s latest Cultural Investment Fund announcements.
A total of £18.8m will be spent on museums as part of the Museums Estate and Development (MEND) Fund, part of a £48m in capital which also includes the Libraries Improvement Fund and Cultural Development Fund.
The top recipients of the MEND funding are Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, which will receive £4.9m to improve public access and fund structural work, and Brighton Museum and Gallery – located in the Royal Pavilion garden – which will receive £1.4m for the building’s roof.
Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery (pictured above) is currently closed but is set to partially reopen in April 2022
MEND funding across England will see the Midlands receive a total of £8m across seven locations, London receive £1m across three locations, the North receive £4.3m across nine locations predominantly in the North West, the South East receive £3.1m across seven locations, and the South West receive £2.1m across five locations.
The London Transport Museum has been granted £277,093 as part of the MEND funding.
Sam Mullins, the museum’s director, said: “As we recover from the impact of the pandemic, this new investment will enable us to carry out critical repairs and upgrades to our historic Grade II listed building.
“It will help ensure our galleries and exhibitions, which relate how public transport moves and shapes our city, are more accessible to our visitors and aid our efforts to ensure our building is more environmentally friendly for the future.
A further £24 million will be distributed via the Cultural Development Fund to a total of seven projects.
Among them is the English Heritage project ‘The Living Barracks’ at Berwick Barracks, which will receive £4.2m. The project hopes to reinvent currently empty buildings and spaces on the site back into use. As part of the plans, the existing exhibition, gallery and cultural space in the area are also to be updated and improved.
Kate Mavor, chief executive at English Heritage said the grant will “help to breathe life into Berwick Barracks, unlocking and bringing back into use empty buildings and spaces within this immense site, right in the heart of Berwick town.”
Also in the North is the ‘Forging Ahead’ project from Barnsley Museums, which will receive £3.9m. The funding has been granted for the cultural hub which is set to include workspaces, galleries and events spaces.