The Great Escape
A new, UK-wide creative project for museums to engage with schools and families, inspired by the nature around us.
The Great Escape will bring museums, schools, families and communities together to engage young people with the UK's natural environment, drawing inspiration from the art and objects in museums and the creative and learning opportunities they can offer.
It will bring schools and families into museum spaces, inviting primary school children aged 7-11 to explore the animals in their collections and create stories and pictures that imagine a creature’s journey to a future habitat rich in biodiversity. The things they make in the classroom, online and in museums will be brought together in a collective work of art, unveiled during a weekend of activities for all ages on Earth Day 2023.
The Great Escape coincides with the BBC’s Wild Isles programme, a major new BBC natural history series, presented by Sir David Attenborough, revealing a previously unseen wild side of the UK. It will inspire primary school children through art and design activities on BBC Bitesize, also linked to from other BBC sites.
The project will bring together museums and galleries in association with a range of partners including the RSPB, the UK's largest nature conservation charity protecting habitats, saving species and helping to end the nature and climate emergency and WWF, the world's leading independent conservation organisation, who ensure that people and nature can thrive together for generations to come.
If you want to get involved, the best way to start is by registering your interest so we can keep in touch.
We also have some funding available for those organisations requiring additional support to take part, plus we‘re hosting a series of online workshops where you can find out more about the project and connect with other museums and galleries across the UK.
If your organisation would like to participate, simply let us know by filling in your details below and you’ll be the first to get exclusive updates, including news about partnerships, funding and free resources throughout the project.
We are encouraging as many organisations to participate as possible by running your own activities, workshops, and events – big or small – to join in. Funding is not a prerequisite for getting involved, but if you do require financial support, we have a limited number of small grants available.
We have partnered with Museum Development UK (MDUK) and are working with them locally to deliver a phased approach to launching funding across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, so wherever your organisation is based you will have the chance to apply for ringfenced funding. MDUK are also hosting workshops about funding elibility in England - simply visit the application page to book.
Organisations in Scotland or Wales – we will let you know as soon as funding opens for these nations
We have a series of online workshops for you to find out more about The Great Escape and how the project will be shaped by your ideas. Every month, as well as a project update, we will discuss a specific topic based on your suggestions.
View our upcoming workshops in the series below. Don’t worry if you miss one – we'll make summary notes for you and your colleagues to download and share.
To join us for any of these workshops, all you need to do is register your interest using the form above. If you’ve already registered, look out for our monthly emails with all the booking details.
Tuesday 5 July, 11.30am-1pm
Topic: Collaborating with organisations outside the cultural sector
Download summary notes
Wednesday 27 July, 1-2.30pm
Topic: How can The Great Escape centre the voice of young people?
Download summary notes
Tuesday 27 September, 1-2.30pm
Topic: Curriculum links in The Great Escape
Wednesday 2 November, 9.30-11am
Topic: Measuring Impact: Evaluation Guidance
Tuesday 8 December, 1-2.30pm