Sheffield’s Metalwork Collection to shine thanks to funding success

Jan 31 2014

The Millennium Gallery is set to provide a vibrant new showcase for the city’s renowned Metalwork Collection thanks to major Government funding announced today. Museums Sheffield has successfully bid for £110,000 from the Department for Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) and the Wolfson Foundation as part of an ambitious £300,000 project to revitalise the gallery’s existing displays of decorative metalwork, cutlery and flatware.

Sheffield’s Metalwork Collection has proved a visitor favourite at the Millennium Gallery since the gallery opened in 2001 but the largely static display are now dated and showing signs of wear and tear. Thanks to support from the DCMS and the Wolfson Foundation, Museums Sheffield is undertaking a major redesign of the Metalwork gallery, including the introduction of new mobile wall structures, LED lighting, freestanding cabinets and flexible cases, which will allow curators to share much more of the collection on a regular basis. Work on the project will begin in October 2014 with the new displays unveiled in February 2015.    

Sheffield’s Metalwork Collection was classed as a Designated Collection by the DCMS in 1999 in recognition of its national and historical significance. The collection exemplifies the Sheffield’s rich cultural and historical association with the production of metal that dates as far back as the 14th century. Comprising over 13,000 pieces, it pays tribute to the skill and craftsmanship of past British metalworkers, as well as highlighting the most contemporary cutting edge designs by new and emerging talents.

Museums Sheffield is one of 40 museums services across England which will benefit from grants worth over £4.6 million jointly funded by the Department for Culture, Media & Sport and the Wolfson Foundation. The grants are designed to fund renovation and improvement projects in museums and galleries, to increase access and enhance the display of exhibits.

Kim Streets, Chief Executive at Museums Sheffield, said: ‘We’re hugely grateful to the DCMS and the Wolfson Foundation for supporting the redevelopment of the Millennium Gallery’s Metalwork displays. The Metalwork Collection is one of the real jewels in Sheffield’s crown and a testament to the city’s worldwide reputation for craftsmanship and excellence. We’re delighted to have the opportunity give the collection the showcase it deserves.’

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey said: ‘The range of projects being funded is testament to the great variety of wonderful collections and attractions at our museums and galleries across the country. These grants will help improve visitor experiences, benefiting local communities and helping to encourage growth, whilst also inspiring audiences with new knowledge, and I’m delighted that with the ongoing generosity of the Wolfson Foundation we have been able to help fund so many projects.’

Paul Ramsbottom, Chief Executive of the Wolfson Foundation said: ‘We are pleased to be working with government to fund outstanding projects at museums and galleries across England. The DCMS/Wolfson Fund is an excellent example of how a funding charity and government department can work productively together. The projects supported this round are impressive, and will help inspire visitors to the country’s wonderful museums and galleries.’

The grant from DCMS/Wolfson Foundation will be supplemented by a six month programme of fundraising by Museums Sheffield. £10,000 has already been secured from local trusts and foundations and a range of sponsorship opportunities are now being presented to Sheffield businesses.

If you want help us transform Sheffield’s Metalwork Collection displays to inspire tomorrow’s designer-makers, contact Ceris Morris, Head of Fundraising on 0114 278 2659, or click here to visit our shop and donate today. Your donation could make a big difference.



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