Submissions for the 2021 Awards close on the 31st March, with this year’s application process having been simplified and many fees reduced or scrapped to remove barriers to entry. Several pandemic-specific categories have also been introduced in light of 2020’s unique struggles.

“It is both exciting and rewarding for us to highlight the sector’s bold, creative responses to the most challenging of times”, notes Anna Preedy, director of the Museums + Heritage Awards.

“My message to all those considering submitting an entry is not to miss out on richly deserved recognition. We want to share and celebrate the projects and people who have once again shown just how remarkable this industry is.”

Awards 2022 – News

2021 categories

COVID Special Recognition Award

Eligibility dates: 23 March 2020 to 31 March 2021
Entry fee: free to enter

COVID Best Supplier Award

Eligibility dates: 23 March 2020 to 31 March 2021
Entry fee: free to enter

Volunteer(s) of the Year in partnership with Association of Independent Museums

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: free to enter

The Pandemic Pivot Award >20 Paid FTE Employees

Eligibility dates: 23 March 2020 to 31 March 2021
Entry fee: free to enter

The Pandemic Pivot Award <20 Paid FTE Employees

Eligibility dates: 23 March 2020 to 31 March 2021
Entry fee: free to enter

Fundraising Award

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: free to enter

Sustainable Project of the Year sponsored by National Lottery Heritage Fund

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: free to enter

Community Impact Award

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Learning Outreach Award

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Best Use of Digital – UK

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Best Use of Digital – International

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Best Use of Social Media

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Partnership of the Year Award

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Exhibition of the Year – UK

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

International Exhibition of the Year – International

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Shop of the Year

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT

Restoration or Conservation Project of the Year

Eligibility dates: 1 January to 31 December 2020
Entry fee: £90 + VAT


Entries to all this year’s categories can be made here.

Awards judge and ALVA (Association of Leading Visitor Attractions) director Bernard Donoghue also believes there has never been a more important time for the sector to reflect on recent achievements.

“Noël Coward once said everyone deserves a little jam. I can’t think of a time when that was more relevant. Regardless of who you are, you warrant recognition. We must mark who has risen to the challenge and the Museums + Heritage Awards are the perfect way to do this.

“The innovation and ingenuity that’s gone on behind the scenes to excite and entice people back when the sector reopens has been absolutely astonishing. Whether you work in front of house, operations, cleaning, marketing, finance or security, this is your time to shine – you’ve really proved yourself in the last year.”

‘You’ve really proved yourself in the last year’: Museums + Heritage Awards judge praises ‘astonishing’ sector

It has now been confirmed that the 2021 Awards will be hosted by journalist and broadcaster Samira Ahmed, as the virtual ceremony builds on the success of last year’s first ever online edition.

All applications are made via the Museums + Heritage Awards online portal, with all relevant details listed and FAQs answered here.

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