This year’s Museum + Heritage Awards shortlist was made from hundreds of entries with an esteemed judging panel painstakingly deliberating over an exceptionally strong field.

Out of the 12 categories 58 projects have been shortlisted including ten from two new categories: Volunteers and Fundraisers of the Year.

Winners will be announced at a glittering awards ceremony on Wednesday 18 May in the Historic Staterooms of 8 Northumberland Avenue (tickets for the event can be booked here) with comedian Marcus Brigstocke returning to entertain guests. “The standard was very high this year and every place on the shortlist was hard fought,” said Bernard Donoghue, judge and director of the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions.

The full shortlist: 

Customer Service

– The Houses of Parliament, Visitor Services Team
– Birmingham Conservation Trust, Customer Service to Die For: The Coffin Works Birmingham
– Heritage Learning, See, Touch, Live, Learn: Developing the Customer Experience

Project on a Limited Budget

– The Novium Museum, 24 Hour Inventive Factory
– Gallery Oldham, Go Baby/Go Explorers
– Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Dodo Roadshow
– Jewish Museum London, Your Jewish Museum: Love
– West Cheshire Museums & Big Heritage, Chester Unlocked

Restoration or Conservation

– National Trust, Dyrham Park Roof Conservation Project
– Grant Museum of Zoology, UCL, Bone Idols: Protecting Our Iconic Skeletons
– Cadbury Research Library, University of Birmingham, Conservation of the Birmingham Qur’an Manuscript
– Beck and Cheshire West and Chester Council, Lion Salt Works Restoration
– Lincoln Castle, Lincolnshire County Council, Lincoln Castle Revealed: Ten Year £22m Restoration
– Bodleian Libraries, Conservation of famous Elizabethan Tapestry map, the Sheldon Tapestry of Worcestershire

Temporary or Touring Exhibition

– The Museum of London, The Crime Museum Uncovered
– Bristol Culture, Bristol City Council, death: the human experience
– Victoria and Albert Museum, Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty – Hear more about this project at the M+H Show
– Durham University, Magna Carta & The Changing Face of Revolt
– The Bowes Museum, Yves Saint Laurent: Style is Eternal

The International Award

– Horsens Museum and Kvorning Design & Communication, Horsens Prison Museum – Hear more about this project at the M+H Show
– Museum of Natural Sciences, Brussels, The Gallery of Humankind – Our Evolution, Our Body
– Naturalis, Live ScienceAustralian National Maritime Museum, Action Stations Experience
– Art+Com, National Museum of Denmark, Veile Municipality, Experience Center Kongernes Jelling
– Kossmann.dejong on behalf of Tropenmuseum Junior, ZieZo Marokko

Volunteers of the Year Award

– Somerset & Dorset Railway Trust, Nigel Smart
– Defford Airfield Heritage Group (supporter group) and the National Trust, Robert (Bob) Shaw
– RNLI Henry Blogg Museum, RNLI Henry Blogg Museum volunteers
– Horniman Museum & Gardens, Bobby Ogogo
– Chippenham Museum and Heritage Centre, Chippenham Town Council, Volunteers & Friends Group
– Glasgow Museums, Robert (Bob) H. James
– National Holocaust Centre and Museum, Holocaust Survivors

Trading + Enterprise

– Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, Enterprise Initiative
– National Trust, Croome, Sky Café at Croome Court
– Whitworth Art Gallery, Retail Shop
– Black Country Living Museum, Forging a Culture of Enterprise & Self Reliance at BCLM
– Chester Cathedral Enterprises Ltd, The Gift Shop, Chester Cathedral

Innovation

– Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, The Lister Project
– Deafax on behalf of The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, Signly at Roald Dahl
– Wellcome Collection, Digital Stories
– Natural History Museum, David Attenborough’s First Life: A Virtual Reality Experience

Fundraisers of the Year

– National Trust, Dyrham Park Roof Conservation Project
– Biggar Museum Trust, Biggar & Upper Clydesdale Museum
– People’s History Museum, Sponsor a Radical Hero Campaign

Educational Initiative

– Bolton Library and Museums Services with The Octagon Theatre and Ladywood School, Smithills Hall – A House Through Time
– Royal Museums Greenwich, National Maritime Museum, Against Captain’s Orders
– Historic Royal Palaces, Movie Maker Mission
– Culture Coventry, Creative Bridges
– Norfolk Museums Service, Norfolk Teaching Museum Traineeship Programme

Marketing Campaign

– The Royal Air Force Museum, Entrant for National Lottery Awards 2015
– Victoria and Albert Museum, Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty
– The Courtauld Gallery, Egon Schiele: The Radical Nude
– Lincoln Castle, Lincolnshire County Council, Lincoln Castle Revealed: Re-opening after £22m Restoration
– Bodleian Libraries, Promotion of Bodleian Libraries ’12 millionth book – the lost Shelley Poem’

Permanent Exhibition

– Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, The Lister Project
– Coventry Transport Museum (Culture Coventry), The International Transport Museum
– ZMMA on behalf of V&A, V&A Europe Galleries
– English Heritage, Re-presenting Eltham Palace – Hear more about this project at the M+H Show
– Stanton Williams on behalf of British Museum, Waddesdon Bequest Gallery

Chartered Institute of Fundraising October 2021
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Education Initiative – Against Captain’s Orders – National Maritime Museum