Ecomuseum - A brave community response?
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Ecomuseum - A brave community response?



Alistair Bowden, Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum Ltd

Alistair Bowden, Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum Ltd

Presentation from the Museums Galleries Scotland 'Fortune Favours the Brave' conference, September 2013.



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Ecomuseum - A brave community response? Ecomuseum - A brave community response? Presentation Transcript

  • Ecomuseums A Brave Community Response to Commemorating a Shared Heritage of Place in an Age of Austerity? Fortune Favours the Brave – MGS Biennial Conference Thursday 12 September 2013 Hampden Park, Glasgow Alistair Bowden, Project Co-ordinator
  • Overview 1. What is an Ecomuseum? 2. Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum – Brief History 3. Model 4. So what is the Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum model a. it brave? b. ...and can it be replicated?
  • 1. What is an Ecomuseum? Normal Museum Ecomuseum
  • Scottish examples •Ceumannan Ecomuseum, Trotternish, Skye •Easdale Island Folk Museum •Kilmartin House Museum
  • 2. A brief history 2008-09 •Five members of the local community met in August 2008 •What to do to mark the 500th anniversary? •How to create a lasting legacy? •They wanted to find out what other local people were thinking •Newspaper article •First stakeholders emerge (30ish) •Student placement •Stakeholders increase (80ish) •Ecomuseum first mentioned
  • 2010-11 •Grant funding from Leader •Phase 1 of the Ecomuseum development (£30k)
  • 2012 •Preparation of the HLF grant applications •Heritage Lottery Fund •First Round application (£85,000) •Detailed planning •Second Round application (£1.3m) •£877,000 cash; £450,000 volunteer time
  • 2013-2016 Learning more about the battle, its context and aftermath Efficiently engaging with schools Increase no. of sites Small no. of activities Profile raising
  • F. Marketing/PR •Building a broad profile for Flodden •Giving support to community groups in doing their own PR •Encouraging tourism businesses to grasp the opportunity
  • 3. Model
  • Flodden model (2)
  • Led by the community •Chaired by Lord Joicey •Strong community representatives on the Steering Committee •Strong and vocal Stakeholder Group
  • Public participation •Regular Stakeholder meetings •Key influence / decision making: •Leader application •HLF Rounds One and Two •Nominating and selecting sites for inclusion Ecomuseum network
  • Joint ownership & management •Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum Ltd •Administration provided by: •Leader: Glendale Gateway Trust •HLF: Woodhorn Trust
  • Process, not product •All Ecomuseum project delivery is about supporting the stakeholders to work together to everyone’s net benefit
  • Involve local businesses Rose and Thistle Ice Cream Blood Orange Marmalade Flodden Tartan Cycle Routes
  • Depend on volunteers •Everything depends on volunteers
  • Sense of place •Arguably the Borders’ most historically significant event •European dimension •Scale and impact of the losses •Central place in local culture: •Selkirk •Flowers of the Forest/Marmion
  • Geographic space
  • Continuity and change •Looking backwards: •Battle of Flodden 1513 •Impact on the culture of the Borders and beyond •Looking forwards •Potential for community and economic development •Exemplified by the 3 year education programme
  • Fragmented museum
  • Conservation in situ
  • Movable and immovable tangible and intangible
  • Research: local and academic •Community archaeology •Community palaeography •Academic heritage studies •Academic organisation studies
  • Research: multi and inter-disciplinary •Community is interdisciplinary: •what more can we learn about Flodden and its aftermath? •Academic is interdisciplinary: •what is the nature of the Ecomuseum?
  • Interpretation: holistic
  • Interpretation: connections
  • Sustainable Environmental Dev. •Wise use of resources •Allow for development •(except on the battlefield) •Document past and present culture •Mainly about raising the profile of the past •Also about 500th commemorations and the huge community-led programme of events
  • Sustainable Economic Development •Responsible tourism
  • Sustainable Community Development •Establishing cross-border links amongst groups and communities •where a border has on the one hand very little meaning (“we’re all Borderers”) •yet on the other hand significant meaning as a legal and administrative line (2014 Scottish Referendum on Independence!!)
  • 4. The Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum model it brave? ...can it be replicated?
  • Mapped against National Strategy for Scotland’s Museums and Galleries 1b. Inspire and deliver new forms of audience engagement through research, interpretation and effective use of digital and emerging technologies. 2a. Increase the impact of museums and galleries on Scotland’s learning culture by providing a wider range of experiences for enjoyment, development and learning. 2b. Increase cultural participation, maximising the number and range of people who see collections and visit and enjoy museums. 2c. Deepen the connections between museums and communities, sharing knowledge and promoting well-being and understanding. 3a. Attract and nurture talent, share and develop the skills and competencies of all parts of the workforce including volunteers, and plan more effectively for succession. 4b. Increase the financial sustainability of sector organisations [and the wider economy] by exploiting a wider range of income sources and new ways of working. 5b. Develop collaborative approaches to achieve shared ambition, increase impact and enable an agile and adaptable sector to aim higher.
  • Flodden model (1) •Leader: strong, independent, capable, respected •Steering group: strength & diversity •Public service organisations have ALWAYS taken a support role, NEVER a leading / directing role •Careful deliberate progress, keeping ALL stakeholders engaged, participating and contributing •Three funding bids, each progressively larger and more ambitious: £30k, £80k, £1.3m
  • Flodden model (2) •Outcomes have evolved, but built progressively: •Mark the 500th anniversary •Listen to, actively respond to, support and encourage local community to appreciate and benefit from Flodden •Learn more about and give increased access to the tangible and intangible heritage •Encourage businesses to contribute to and take advantage of the opportunity
  • Flodden model (3) •Strategy mix
  • Is it brave? •If we define brave as “high risk and high reward”, then the answer has to be YES •Many similar projects have crashed and burned •Many more are not robust, nor sustainable in the long term •Traditional museums, leading limited community engagement is “lower risk and lower reward”: •BUT more expensive, lower impact and unsustainable
  • Is it replicable? •The ecomuseum framework is flexible •It gives enough structure to provide stimulation •But not so much as to restrict innovation •Depending on what sort of ecomuseum is desired, the Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum may provide a model