'Enriching Regions' scheme launches in Ipswich

  • 22 November 2006

Curators from the East of England visit Ipswich for the launch of The Art Fund's new collecting initiative, 'Enriching Regions', to hear how the scheme could help them build their collections.

‘Enriching Regions: The Art Fund Collecting Scheme’ will make up to £45,000 per region available to museums in the East of England, East Midlands and West Midlands thanks to a funding package of £130,000 from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.

The scheme has been devised in direct response to research The Art Fund undertook earlier this year. The Collecting Challenge: The Art Fund Museum Survey 2006 found that many museums are no longer actively collecting, and that almost 70% now acquire new material mainly or solely by gift.

It found that the three poorest regions in collecting terms are the East Midlands, West Midlands and the East of England, and that local authority-owned and independent museums are the types of museum that are least able to collect.  The Enriching Regions scheme is specifically designed to assist the museums with the greatest need.

Peter Brooks, a Trustee of Sheringham Museum said of the scheme, “This will make an enormous difference to us – I don’t think people appreciate how much difference even a small amount of money can make to a small museum”

Museums can apply for up to 100% of the cost of the work (minimum grant of £2,000), but priority will be given to those museums that can also find local funding – perhaps from a patron or local business. The Art Fund is keen to encourage museums to build and develop relationships with local donors and has arranged for Arts & Business – a not for profit organisation set up to assist businesses and arts organisations in creating partnerships – to give advice to any museum wishing to develop skills in this area. 

Enriching Regions will run from 1 November 2006 – 1 November 2007 and will be open to accredited local authority-owned and independent museums and galleries in the East of England, West Midlands and East Midlands.  Museums should contact Sarah Philp in The Art Fund’s Grants Office on 020 7225 4803 for further information.

Related Links:

Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

Arts and Business