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SWFed 2017 Conference & AGM: Partnerships in Practise

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University of Exeter

X-Fi Building



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SWFed 2017 Conference & AGM: Partnerships in Practise

5 & 6 July, 2017 (hosted by the Department of Geography, University of Exeter)

Book early to save! Plus book both days and join our delegates evening event for free!

Sustaining our organisations in this tough and uncertain economic climate is becoming increasingly challenging for many. As with all things, a challenge can often become an opportunity and increasingly there is strength to be found in working together, pooling resources, and developing projects and strategies that enable us to meet our goals and provide for our audiences and collections.

Over the coming years the South Western Federation of Museums and Art Galleries will be maximising on these opportunities by forging two-way partnerships that benefit members and the partner organisation.

This years conference explores and showcases examples of successful partnerships in practise, giving a chance to learn from others experience. Through presentations, interactive workshops and networking opportunities we will be sharing skills and knowledge from museums and potential partners such as archives, archaeologists, libraries and artist practitioners from across the region.

"Archives and museums have much to offer each other. I believe this conference will be a great opportunity to share ideas and expertise" - Tim Powell, The National Archives

Important information

Visiting: The Conference is held on the Streatham Campus of Exeter University, a map and other related information can be found here: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/visit/directions/streathammap/

For transport details to get to the Campus please visit: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/visit/directions/streatham/

Parking: The Campus operates a pay and display system and charges apply between 08.00 and 18.00 hours. There are no reserved parking spaces. The University and SWFed encourage delegates to take alternative methods of transport to the Conference (see links under visiting).

Please note: for those booking overnight campus accommodation a residential parking permit is issued upon arrival which is valid until departure the next day.

Accommodation: Overnight B&B is available at the Campus, available on a first come, first served basis. Booking early is highly recommended. The SWFed is not able to reserve rooms on behalf of delegates. To book, please visit: https://www.exeter.ac.uk/eventexeter/accommodation/bedandbreakfast/ for accommodation FAQs visit https://www.exeter.ac.uk/eventexeter/accommodation/visitorfaqs/

Joining the SWFed: If you are not a Member and would like to join the SWFed before booking your conference ticket, please visit our online membership page on our website: https://www.swfed.org.uk/membership

Refund policy: You can request a full refund up to 7 days before the event. If you have purchased a ticket, you may transfer the ticket to another person at any time. If you have a SWFed Member ticket, the person you transfer to must also be an SWFed Member. In the unlikely event of a cancellation from the organiser, full refunds will be made. Refunds must be requested through Eventbrite, and we will respond to all refund requests within 5 business days.


09:30 Registration and coffee

10:00 Introduction and Welcome

10:20 Dr Mike Heyworth MBE - Council for British Archaeology KEYNOTE

Working in partnership: adding value through collaboration

In this keynote address I will describe the work being undertaken through Heritage 2020 – a unique national programme of collaboration across the historic environment sector in England to add value to the work of individual organisations (see www.heritage2020.net). Established in 2015, the initiative is bringing together a range of partners to tackle priority issues at a critical time for the wider heritage sector. One key area of activity is the development of skills which is being addressed both in terms of supply and demand. This links in closely with ongoing work in the archaeology sector across the UK to develop National Occupational Standards and structures to support professional development. The presentation will conclude with some thoughts on opportunities to develop broader partnerships across the cultural sector to mutual benefit.

11:05 - Julie Hutchison - Transforming Performance Ltd

So what’s in it for me? The benefits of working in partnership for me and my organisation.

Often, we are so busy “doing” that we don’t always manage to get to the bigger picture “thinking”. We can miss opportunities that are in front of us and actually end up working far harder than we need, especially when budgets are squeezed. In this session Julie will be looking at how you can enhance your results, and improve the impact you can make in your organisation through collaboration and partnerships.

We will be looking at why we should be working in partnership with other teams, other organisations and at every opportunity we can. You will be ready and raring to go at finding your own partnership opportunities with minimum effort and maximum impact. You will be ready and raring to go at finding your own collaborative partnership opportunities for maximum performance with minimum effort.

11:25 - Rupert Goulding - National Trust

Partnerships and the National Trust

The talk will explore different types of partnership the National Trust has across the South West, and nationally, drawing out some of the benefits and challenges for all parties. Partnerships range in size and duration, from activity at individual sites to cross-regional work, and from short projects to multi-year programmes. The talk will also explore two developments within the National Trust that support partnerships: the recently published Research Strategy, and the conclusion of a Curatorial Review, which have both placed increased emphasis on collaboration and partnerships in support of the National Trust cause and strategy. The talk will conclude with some thoughts on how to collaborate with the National Trust in the South West region, exploring priority interests and opportunities.

11:45 - Break

12:15 - June Gamble - Plymouth Dance

Plymouth Dance & Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery Partnership:

Outline of the historic relationship between Plymouth Dance and Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery, with a focus on the Gerhard Richter Exhibition Dance Commissions andResidency in 2015/2016 and a brief look towards future collaborations leading up to the opening of Plymouth History Centre in 2020.

12:35 Michael Spender - Wessex Museums Partnership

Our Journey So Far

Michael will talk about the Wessex Museums Partnership story so far, the aim of the partnership and how partnership working adds value to museums, other organisations and audiences by facilitating greater resilience and sustainability, innovative programming, social wellbeing and enhanced visitor experiences. By working together in these challenging times, the Wessex Museums Partnership believes that we will be better equipped to achieve our ambitions and by making the most of common opportunities, improve our offer and impact with audiences.

12:55 Isobel Hunter - The National Archive

Archives Unlocked: How partnerships play a role in developing and delivering a new vision for the archive sector.

Archives Unlocked was launched by Matt Hancock, Minister of State for Digital and Culture, in March 2017. Archives Unlocked is the new vision for the archives sector, which sets out the vital role archives play in society and an action plan to support them to realise this potential. Partnership is at the heart of the action plan – as a way of increasing the capacity of archives including to capitalise digital opportunities, and to establish a resilient and thriving sector.

1:15 - LUNCH

2:15 - WORKSHOPS choose one from three when booking (45 mins each)

1. Oxford University Museums Partnership - Susan Griffiths and Nicola Bird

The practicalities of partnership working

We will be looking how the Community Engagement Team plan, engage with and maintain different partnerships (both present and past partnerships) from both a strategic to practical perspective. Their varied relationships range from national to regional to locally based partnerships with organisations and charities as well as small volunteer-led community groups and networks. They look at what makes partnerships successful and will also describe those that haven’t worked and why.

From this, the participants will work in small group to consider; Why they want to build partnerships, What their museum has to offer, Which partners they want to work with and why, What these partnerships will mean to the partners as well the museum.

You will walk away with strategies you can use as soon as you return to work on planning and building your partnerships.

2. Transforming Performance Ltd - Julie Hutchison

Partnerships in Practise: How to create Partnership Opportunities and make them work for you

This fun and engaging session with Julie focuses on the practicalities of collaboration and building partnerships. We looked at the “why” in the main session and now we have the chance to look at how it relates to you and what you need to do now: We will be talking about; knowing what you need, Understanding your own value, How to spot opportunities and Understanding others and picking up on genius You will come away with a plan for your next steps for creating better partnerships and the confidence to start utilising the skills and experiences of others in your field.

3. The National Archives - Tim Powell

The basics of looking after archives in museums and galleries.

The workshop will outline the nature and purpose of archives, both the permanent administrative records of individual museums as institutions and those archival items and collections which may have been brought in as part of a museums holdings.It will briefly explore how the nature of archives leads to specific management issues around collection care, documentation and access, and how the principles behind intellectual and physical control of archives help to ensure their integrity and long term preservation. This session should give participants an understanding of areas where archives management is different from management of objects and the reasons for this, core principles for managing archives safely and legally, and where to go for further advice and assistance.

3:00 Quick-fires - 5 mins each

1. Dea Birkett – Kids in Museums - Takeover day 2017 – Putting kids at your heart

2. Dr David Yates - NADFAS - The Arts Society – who are we and what are we up to?

3. Julie Cullen - Julie Cullen Training and Consultancy - five key steps to creating a successful museum café

4. Holly Brooks - Blackbox-AV - An Introduction to Blackbox-AV

Quick Fires Further Details:

Kids in Museums - Takeover day 2017 – Putting kids at your heart

Takeover Day is the annual day on which young people are given meaningful, powerful, decision-making roles in a museum. They can be anything from greeters at front of house to tour guides and pest controllers. This years Takeover Day is on Friday 17th November. Dea Birkett, Creative Director at Kids in Museums, will give practical advice and insights into how your museum can be part of this biggest initiative ever with young people in the museum sector in Britain and how it wont only benefit the young people involved, but you.

NADFAS - The Arts Society – who are we and what are we up to?

Better known as NADFAS and now ‘The Arts Society’ it is the largest arts charity of its type in the UK with over 92,000 members with 5,000 in 25 societies in the South West region ranging west from Bridgwater to Penzance.

Our mission is Arts (in the widest sense) education and conservation. Each of our societies holds nine monthly lectures each year and brings top flight lecturers to deliver brilliant topics to members wanting to expand their knowledge.

The really important aspects of our society are the four specialist divisions – Heritage Volunteers, Church recorders, Development, sponsorship and encouragement of young people in all forms of creative arts through schools, youth organisations and specialist arts colleges and the setting of trails of discovery in Churches, Mosques, Synagogues etc. All these unique tasks are performed by trained volunteers with specialist knowledge

The session will flesh out these topics in more detail to explain what the charity gives to the community.

Julie Cullen Catering - Five Key Steps to Creating a Successful Museum Café

A museum catering facility should not only return a profit to the site but it should also enhance the visitor experience and have synergy with the organisations core mission. A very quick-firelook at key considerations that will help to maximise profitability and customer satisfaction, whether planning a new facility or have a well-established café which may be struggling.


A 5 minute introduction to Blackbox-AV, discussing what we do within the AV industry and some examples of the work we do with museums & heritage sites.

3:30 - Break

4:00 - Laura Bedford / Alex Coulter - National Alliance for Museums Health and Wellbeing and Arts and Health SW

Museums, arts and health partnerships: What can we learn from each other?

Arts and health partnership work has been taking place for nearly 60 years. In comparison museums have only recently begun to deliver health and wellbeing provision. Alex Coulter from Arts and Health South West will be exploring key examples of this practice and lessons that have been learnt from the work. Laura Bedford from the NAMHW (National Alliance for Museums, Health and Wellbeing) will discuss how museums can benefit from the experience and knowledge built up through arts and health projects in order to initiate or further develop their own wellbeing programmes. Delegates will take away examples of practice outside of the sector which can help inform their own work.

4:20 - Dr. Nicola Thomas - University of Exeter

Bridging the Gap: the promise of Heritage and Higher Education partnerships

The promise of partnership has often been seen in higher education / heritage sector partnerships in recent years, successful projects with co-produced aims, delivering thoughtful outputs for all stakeholders. For those organisations looking to build similar partnerships, the promise can seem unobtainable, with a chasm to bridge, with no obvious points of navigation.

Dr Nicola Thomas will discuss the findings from the ‘Bridging the Gap - Engaged Heritage’ project that has been supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the GW4 group of universities of Cardiff, Bristol, Bath and Exeter.

This project has sought to identify how we can support a more even distribution of partnerships across the sector, learning from best practice, and providing tools and expertise to support a deeper reach of higher education research and teaching into the regional heritage sector infrastructure.

Nicola will place this learning in the context of her own experience of partnership working within the heritage sector.

4:40 - Jill Shonk - Gloucestershire Archives

‘For the Record’ partnership project (archives, museums and local societies in a heritage hub) at Gloucestershire Archives.

5:00 - Q and A - All speakers

5:30 - END

7:00 - Evening Event – included free for those booking both days of the conference (otherwise a small charge – see above). Please note this will take place in Reed Hall, University of Exeter.

• Complimentary drink upon arrival (glass of wine or juice)
• Knife/fork buffet, dessert, tea/coffee
• Followed by evening entertainment with a SWFed hosted team quiz!! There will be a bar open for the purchase of further drinks.


09:30 Registration and Coffee

10:00 AGM followed by stand up meeting of new Board. The Agenda, Nomination Forms and further details on becoming a Board Member can be found here: https://www.swfed.org.uk/about-us/get-involved/

10:45 Coffee

11:30 - Jackie Chelin (Chair) / Jill Barker (Trustee) South West Regional Library Service

Libraries: open for all

Both the workshop and the presentation sessions will be focused around three main areas, as below. The workshop will build on the presentation. Both will be as interactive as possible.

• The scale/range/reach of the libraries that are members of SWRLS

• Our activities in support of workforce development

• Our partnership working

11:50 Chloe Hampson - Fit for the Future Network

Collaboration and climate change

Want to tap into a network of sustainability professionals who are working together to make their organisations climate-friendly, adaptive and resilient, and saving money too? Fit for the Future is a knowledge sharing network for people who own or look after buildings, working with more than 80 organisations and 300 people from organisations across the UK, including Tate, The Whitworth Gallery, Historic Royal Palaces, Guide Dogs for the Blind, RNLI and English Heritage. Hear about how people from a range of background and organisations are working together, sharing knowledge and lessons learnt to save valuable time, money and energy.

12:10 - 12:15 - Transition to workshops

12:15 Workshops round two - choose one from three when booking (45 mins each)

1. Laura Bedford / Sarah Desmarias - National Alliance for Museums Health and Wellbeing and Arts and Health SW

Partnerships for Wellbeing

This workshop will explore the benefits and barriers to working in partnership with the health sector in order to deliver successful wellbeing programmes in museums. The session will help define what wellbeing partnership work can be in museums by looking at key case studies. It will also provide an opportunity for participants to identify potential barriers and discuss how to overcome them in order to initiate work in this area or support current health and wellbeing work in your own organisation.

2. Emmie Kell and Dr Tehmina Goskar - Cornwall Museums Partnership

Collaboration as a force for change – how partnership working can support organisational development and culture change

This session will focus on lessons learned from Cornwall’s Change Marker programme. This Arts Council funded programme is a partnership between Dr Tehmina Goskar, Royal Cornwall Museum and Cornwall Museums Partnership. We will explore our experiences of using collaborative working to achieve lasting cultural change in one of the country’s oldest museums. We will share the approaches developed by Dr Goskar including Cornwall’s new Citizen Curator programme.

3. Jackie Chelin (Chair) / Jill Barker (Trustee) - South West Regional Library Service

Libraries: open for all

Both the workshop and the presentation sessions will be focused around three main areas, as identified above in presentation slot

1:00 - LUNCH

2:00 - Camilla Hampshire / Julien Parsons RAMM

A working partnership: RAMM and the University of Exeter

Historically, RAMM and the University of Exeter share a common ancestor and the two organisations have always shared expertise. However, since RAMM’s major development project was completed at the end of 2011, a stronger, multi-faceted partnership has been developed, culminating in a formal memorandum of understanding. The speakers will use the perspective gained on the last six years to examine the areas in which we have worked – for example digital projects, student placements, collaborative PhDs and high-profile exhibitions – to offer insights into the challenges and rewards of the work as well as the opportunities for evolving our partnership in the future.

2:30 - Claire Sully Volunteer Makers (30 mins)

The future of volunteering: Volunteer Makers

A changing volunteer landscape - due to shifts in demographics, new funding models and digital has led museums to rethink how to inspire, manage and grow a volunteer community. Claire Sully is Programme Director of Volunteer Makers, which is a pioneering volunteer engagement model, training programme and technology platform. A national Volunteer Makers training programme is currently being rolled, supported by Arts Council England.

3:00 - Q and A session All day 2 speakers

3:30 Conference Close / Thanks / Goodbyes

3:45 END

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