Find your spark!
The Authentic Spark worked with the Cumbria Museums Directors Group, a consortium of museum and heritage sites from across Cumbria, to support them in developing an action plan for partnership working.
The group is diverse, encompassing rural and urban museums, national agencies such as English Heritage and National Trust as well as small independent trusts and local authority museums. While some have national or international significance and draw, being located within ‘honey-pot’ areas of the Lakes, others have much more local audiences and a local remit. Their scales of income, audiences and capacity are varied. However, they were seeking, through this project, to understand each other better and to develop effective ways of working together to support each other, to pursue common areas of challenge and to collectively enhance resilience.
Although ostensibly an action planning project, it was clear that the starting point had to be establishing strong collective vision and measurable objectives, against which actions could be planned and funding raised. The work incorporated a survey of all partner organisations, facilitated workshops as well as review of benchmarking data across the sites. A key piece of research to inform the project was the comparator research into other museum consortia in order to understand lessons learnt and identify best practice examples that could be applicable to this particular case.
CMDG are now working together to implement the action plan.