Barton upon Humber successful in Museum resilience fund bid
A project promoting historical Barton upon Humber has received funding worth £66,000 over the next two years.
The money, awarded by Arts Council England’s Museum resilience fund, will see the town’s history move into the modern era and create an enhanced visitor experience, professional marketing, digital presence, and greater exposure to the outside world.
Liz Bennet, of The Ropewalk Museum, said the successful application had been a partnership with the Wilderspin National School supported by the Barton Tourism Partnership.
“We all believe that what we have to offer in Barton is a valuable visitor experience. This project will put us on the map through increased web presence, greater connectivity through Wikipedia, a more accessible interactive interpretation of the whole town and will raise our profile and make us ready to benefit from national interest in our neighbour’s Hull City of Culture 2017,” she explained.
One aspect of the successful bid is to appoint a Wikipedian in residence for six months to make sure that Barton upon Humber is referenced and linked on line to as many resources as possible.
“For example if you were to look up the Samaritans you would then find that the founder, the late Prebendary Dr Chad Varah CH CBE, was from Barton and then from there it would link to Barton, the house where he lived and its history.” Liz continued
Other aspects of the project include the development of a mobile app so the history of any of the town’s numerous noteworthy buildings can be accessed including details about its construction and any other interesting facts and employing a heritage marketing professional part time for a year to develop a marketing strategy and audience development plan for Barton’s heritage sites individually and as a whole.
Other aspects would include revising and updating the town’s popular shrink map and developing a circular trail that links all three museums via buildings of interest.
“As far as we are aware we think that this holistic approach to interpret the history of the whole town is an unusual and new approach to developing the viability and resilience of museums,” Liz added.
Sarah Maxfield, Area Director, North, Arts Council England, said: ‘“Our Museums resilience fund supports museums by enabling them to become more sustainable and robust, whatever their size, and helping them to offer improved experiences for both audiences and artists. I’m delighted that 27 museums across the North have been awarded a total of £3.7 million in this round and look forward to seeing the results of this funding in the future. The Arts Council’s aim is to achieve great art and culture for everyone – the North has some fantastic museums across the area which between them reach thousands of visitors each year therefore greatly supporting us in our mission. ”