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Wednesday, 12th July 2017

Highlanes Gallery and Drogheda Museum Millmount honoured at national awards

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Pictured at the presentation of awards by the Heritage Council’s Museum Awards Standards Programme (MPSI) are Kevin McAllister, Aoife Ruane, Mayor of Drogheda Pio Smith and Patrick Casey representing Highlanes Gallery, with Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs Heather Humphreys TD, and Chairman of the Heritage Council, Michael Parsons.

Highlanes Gallery and Drogheda Museum Millmount have both been recognised by the Museum Standards Programme for Ireland (MPSI) for their work in collection care, governance, and visitor care and access.

Highlanes Gallery was yesterday awarded full accreditation with the MPSI for the first time, while Drogheda Museum Millmount retained the full accreditation it had been previously awarded.

The programme, which started in 2006 with just 12 participants and now has 57 museums across the island of Ireland participating, recognises excellence in caring for collections, museum management, education, exhibition and visitor services.

The assessors said that the team at the Highlanes Gallery has “…acted on the findings of the previous assessment visits, and has submitted a very detailed and comprehensive application, which addresses issues raised, and as a result the team has achieved Full accreditation.”

Drogheda Museum Millmount was the first volunteer-run museum to achieve Full Accreditation in the MPSI. Its assessor commented “the Museum’s impressive education and community engagement activities continue to be central to the ethos of the Museum and a real strength of the organisation. 

“The range of formal and informal activities provides levels of access to the Museum’s collections and to the history of the town that many other museums aspire to.”

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Heather Humphreys TD, said “Maintaining and cherishing our museums is of great importance to me and I was very pleased recently to be able to announce funding of almost €135,000 for 23 projects around the country under the Local and Regional Museums Funding Scheme 2017.  At a local level there has been great work done to raise the standards of care across Irish museums, and I would like to congratulate and thank all those involved, especially those who are receiving awards here today.”

The Chairman of the Heritage Council, Mr. Michael Parsons, said, “What we see through this programme is that Ireland’s museums are exciting and vibrant places where the staff are working hard, often with very limited budgets and resources, to ensure that the collections in their care are protected and made available to the public. Not only is this important work from a cultural point of view, it also supports tourism in a locality and helps people feel proud of the place where they live”.

“Taking part in a museum standards programme is a public promise by each museum to care for the heritage of its community. Achieving accreditation in the MSPI demonstrates that a museum is meeting its promise.”

Pictured at the presentation of awards by the Heritage Council’s Museum Awards Standards Programme (MPSI) are Donnchadha MacRaghnaill, Mayor of Drogheda Pio Smith, Margaret Clinton and Emmet Doran representing Drogheda Museum Millmount, with Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs Heather Humphreys TD, and Chairman of the Heritage Council, Michael Parsons.

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