Down County Museum and Newry and Mourne Museum Recognised at Museum Accreditation Awards
Twelve local museums including Down County Museum and Newry and Mourne Museum, have been recognised at the Museum Accreditation Awards on Monday 4 December at the Northern Ireland War Memorial, itself an Accredited Museum based at Talbot St in Belfast.
The ceremony was for museums whose return applications have been assessed in 2017 and have maintained their full accreditation status. Hadrian Ellory-van Dekker, Chair of the Accreditation Committee in the UK presented the museums with their Accreditation certificates on the day. It was attended by the local museum sector and guests from across the UK museum sector.
Other local museums who received full Accreditation this year include Local Council museums; Armagh County Museum, FE Mc William Gallery and Studio, North Down Museum, as well as National Trust museums; Castle Ward, Florence Court, Mount Stewart, Hezlett House, and Independent museums; Northern Ireland War Memorial, The Royal Irish Fusiliers Museum, and The Inniskillings Museum.
Tríona White Hamilton, Accreditation Adviser and Assessor at Northern Ireland Museums Council said, “We are delighted that our local museums’ commitment to governance, collections care and visitor experience has ensured their maintenance of the Accreditation Standard. We hope that this will enable the continued development of these museums as valued resources for both visitors and the local community. Accreditation is a national standard which gives confidence to all stakeholders.”
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Roisin Mulgrew said, “Maintaining Accreditation is another milestone in the development of our respective museums. It demonstrates that our staff works to the highest professional standards in care of our collections, and meeting the requirements of all our users.”
The Accreditation Scheme sets nationally agreed standards for museums in the UK. It defines good practice and identifies agreed standards, thereby encouraging development. It is a baseline quality standard that helps guide museums to be the best they can be, for current and future users.
Museums are required to submit their Accreditation return applications every 3 years to ensure they are continuing to maintain the standard.
Although Accreditation is a national standard, it is not a ‘one size fits all’ model. The expectations vary for museums of different types, sizes and scopes. There are currently just under 1,800 museums participating in the scheme across the UK. In Northern Ireland there are 44 Accredited Museums; 21 Local Authority Museums; 13 Independent Museums; 7 National Trust museums; 3 National Museums.