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Designation applications will reopen in 2015

The revised Designation scheme, currently in pilot phase, will reopen for applications in spring 2015.   Following a consultation, Arts Council England (ACE) is to refocus the scheme on its founding principles of “quality and national significance”, according to its new report Pearls and Wisdom

“We are reasserting the founding principles of the scheme – celebrating and helping to safeguard vital collections for present and future generations,” it says.  ACE will “actively articulate the value of these collections for the very long-term”. 

ACE has confirmed there will no longer be an assessment of the holding organisation’s performance, as this has led to some confusion with the Accreditation scheme.  It will, however, be exploring what measures it should take where Designated collections are at risk, and may review awards of ‘all holdings’ to clarify the extent of the Designated collection.  Further new awards will also be made where appropriate. 

The report, which includes case studies from a number of Designated museums and a list of those receiving the distinction, adds: “We will use our public investment to support the development and enrichment of these collections for the long-term public benefit”.  

Read the report here