Geographically-based museum forums offer voluntary peer-support for museums of all sizes, providing opportunities to share news, discuss matters of mutual interest, and offer a platform for collaboration. Further information on the work of Forums and some of their projects can be found on the MGS blog.
While much of Scotland is covered by one or more geographic forum, some areas do not yet have a forum. If you are interested in working with other museums and heritage groups to start a peer support group for your area, please contact Devon McHugh, Senior Partnerships Manager, at email@example.com
For networks and support groups based around a common collection theme, visit our Subject Specialist Networks page.
MGS Geographic forum representatives
In 2019 we initiated a new approach to offer more continuous and comprehensive support to the geographic museum forums operating throughout Scotland.
Geographic forums have been assigned an MGS staff member as a forum representative. Forum representatives act as a main point of contact for museums, offering support from MGS. The development of the skills of MGS representatives, Forum members, and their shared capacity for sustainble partnership working is the key goal of Forum Connections, a 4-year capacity building project supported by NLHF that will run from 2020.
Forum representatives are listed with their respective geographic forum below. A full list of the forum leads and their geographic areas can be found on our Networks and Forums: Overview page.
Argyll & Bute
Argyll & Bute Museums and Heritage Forum
Membership is open to museums and heritage organisations of any size. The Forum aims to deliver skills training for all, with a particular emphasis on upskilling volunteers.
The Forum has recently worked in collaboration with Dig It! TV to reach new audiences and highlight the heritage offerings in the area. You can see the result on YouTube.
Dumfries & Galloway
Dumfries and Galloway Museums and Heritage Network
*Website under development*
The Forum shares information and best practice, with regular network meetings hosted by museums across the region. The Network also develops and supports joint marketing initiatives, working across the region to promote the area’s diverse heritage offerings.
Ken Smyth firstname.lastname@example.org
East of Scotland
East of Scotland Museums Partnership
The East of Scotland Museums Partnership (ESMP) aims to enhance museums services to the public in the East of Scotland and to foster excellence in museum practice.
We are open to all museums, galleries and collections organisations in East Lothian, Edinburgh, Fife, Midlothian and the Scottish Borders.
We have around 40 active partners across a diverse range of organisations, from local authority museums and gallery services, to university museums and independent trusts.
The ESMP is committed to:
- working in partnership with others to realise the full potential of our collections and people
- sharing expertise and knowledge and promoting best practice
- securing funding through developing joint funding proposals
- highlighting the role of museums and galleries not just regionally, but also nationally and internationally.
Member museums have the opportunity to network, share information and provide support to other partners in an informal and friendly setting, they can benefit from the knowledge of our guest speakers and partners as well as behind the scenes visits which are a great way to share best practice, resources and skills. We also provide skills development activities and professional development opportunities.
Eithne Ni Chonghaile
Fife Museums Forum
Fife Museums Forum provides an informal, welcoming atmosphere for members to discuss museums matters relating to the management of museums in Fife and to work for the mutual benefit to the museums represented by the membership. Membership is open to Accredited and non-Accredited museums in Fife; elected Councillors in Fife members also sit on the forum.
Recent collaborative projects include an MGS-funded Management Training programme for Fife and Tayside Museums Forums staff and the publication of a brochure on Learning in Fife for primary teachers across the region, showcasing the Learning resources and facilities at each member venue.
Cathy Cruickshank email@example.com
Download Learning in Fife Museums (PDF)
Highland Museums Forum
Highland Museums Forums offers regular meetings to support museums across this incredibly diverse region. HMF encourages joint publicity initiatives and collaborative exhibitions, including online programmes like My Heart’s In The Highlands, as well as working collectively to support sustainable practise across museums in the Highlands.
Lorna Cruickshank firstname.lastname@example.org
Lanarkshire Heritage Forum
The Forum brings together a range of organisations—including Accredited and non-Accredited museums, family history groups, and local heritage organisations—to share the common goal of promoting local heritage. Regular meetings offer opportunities for discussion and support.
Ed Archer email@example.com
MGS Forum Lead
North Ayrshire Museums Forum
North Ayrshire Museums Forum offers any heritage organisation in North Ayrshire, no matter how small, the opportunity to come together to share resources, ideas, projects, training, and information. Meetings are friendly, informal and approximately every 2 months, held in different venues around North Ayrshire.
Leanna Lennox firstname.lastname@example.org
Outer Hebrides Heritage Network
The network includes any organisation in the area with an interest in heritage – including museums, archives, community organisations, charities and others. An annual conference is organised on behalf of the network by the local authority.
Caitriona MacCuish email@example.com
Tayside Museums Forum
Tayside Museums Forum offers membership to Accredited and non-Accredited museums across the region, and provides peer support, joint working initiatives, and a legendary Christmas meeting with excellent snacks. Recent projects have supported staff development (in Partnership with Fife Museums Forum) and explored skills sharing within the Forum.
Matthew Jarron firstname.lastname@example.org
West Lothian Forum
West Lothian Forum offers an opportunity for heritage organisations and museums to meet together to discuss shared issues around protecting and promoting heritage in the region. The Forum includes small independent museums, heritage organisations, the local authority museums service, and the area’s larger museums, and welcomes new members.
Emma Peattie Emma.Peattie@westlothian.gov.uk
North East Scotland
North East Scotland Museums Forum
This recently established forum represents accredited and non-accredited museums and galleries in Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and Moray.
The forum is currently under development, please use the email below to contact members: