April 29, 2020

Update from Co-Chairs, 29 April 2020

An update from the weekly DCMS meeting for museum organisations.

The launch of a new loan scheme for small and medium businesses, the ‘Bounce Back Loan Scheme’, was noted; the discussion which followed asked for clarity from Treasury that charities could apply, although it was felt that few charities in the museum sector would have the business confidence to take up these loans, with repayments required within 6 years. The scheme is not for public sector organisations.

The NLHF and ACE gave updates on their emergency funding schemes.  Next Monday the NLHF will announce a new strategic intervention package with grants of between £50,000 and £250,000 targeted at larger organisations. ACE are currently assessing the first round of applications for the non-NPO fund, the second round is still open but closes Friday this week. The portal for funding to support NPOs will open 12 May and close 19 May, so a short turnaround. As ever, full details on their respective websites (below).

NMDC/DCMS have set up a working group to consider the implications of coming out of lock down on the museum sector.  UMG committee member, Caroline Macdonald is participating on behalf of her organisation but she will also be able to report back to the committee, so we can share information as available.  The focus will be on the practicalities of adapting to a new situation and what will be needed in terms of supporting infrastructure. The need for clarity over guidelines was emphasised, and the importance of ensuring public confidence, or visitors will not return to museums.

Nicola Kalinsky
Co-Chair
University Museums Group

Links:

https://www.heritagefund.org.uk/news/coronavirus-update

https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19