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Funding newsletter

July 2021

Esmee Fairbairn Collections Fund

The Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund, run by the Museums Association, funds projects which develop collections to achieve social impact.

The Fund started in 2011 and 90 projects have so far received grants totalling £6.7m in 14 funding rounds. Between 2017 and 2019 it is offering a total of £3.5m in grants, as well as providing events and resources for the whole sector.

Museums, galleries and heritage organisations from across the UK can apply for a grant of between £20,000 and £120,000 for a project lasting up to three years.

There are two application rounds each year in March and September, with a short initial application form.

Shortlisted applicants are then invited to make a full application. The guidance for applicants has changed substantially, and all potential applicants should read it carefully before applying.  Guidance is available on the website below.

They are looking for high quality proposals that work with an existing collection or collections to improve understanding of them and increase their use; and through that collections work, involve, inspire and have impact on people, communities and audiences.

Applications will need to engage local communities and/or those who aren’t typical museum attendees, and think about social impact; be developmental for the organisation or sector; and think about the project's legacy, even if this is hard to define at the start of the project

Application Form: Initial Application Form and guidance available to download form the website.


Tel: 020 7566 7851