Bradford Museums & Galleries (BMG) were part of the research project from quite early on. Myself and my colleague, John, we’re involved in early discussions regarding how BMG and their collections could be involved in, and link up with, the Bradford’s National Museum Project. It felt like an excellent opportunity to develop new connections and relationships with all the other local partner organisations and people involved. As we had hoped, the project has given myself and John the chance to meet people that we hadn’t connected with before. We’ve been able to spread these network links wider throughout BMG. We introduce colleagues to the wider project group, link similar projects, and enable joint up activity, which will hopefully have ongoing impact.
From the outset, we believed the project could help the service to change and grow, and hopefully drive change in the museum and heritage sector locally. Organisations and communities in the district are beginning to connect with and recognise the worth and value of Bradford’s museum collections. Those who work for BMG have always known about the diversity, quality and importance of material held by them, but on a local and national level this wasn’t known much about before.
I feel very positive about the new connections and relationships being built. I also appreciated how we were accepted by the National Science and Media Museum as a major participating partner, rather than a lesser supporting organisation that doesn’t play a role on a national scale. BMG has been seen for the value the service adds to the district; the skills and significant collections it holds.
The project to me demonstrated the significant added value collaboration brings and how well it can work. The challenge now is to continue this essential and important process and maintain those connections and mutually valued partnerships across the organisations, groups and individuals involved.
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Elizabeth Llabres's bio
I began my museum career over 13 years ago. I’ve worked in a variety of roles for regional and national organisations, historic houses and local authority. I started out in finance and quickly moved in to collections and curatorial roles as my career, passion and interest developed. Although I’ve worked with every type of museum collection, I particularly enjoy working with social history and Industrial heritage collections. I’m passionate about the objects and the unique stories they each hold. I enjoy meeting individuals who have fascinating stories to tell and I love collections management and working hands on with the objects. The collections at Bradford Museums and Galleries are an incredible resource and have so much to offer. Working with the Bradford’s National Museum project has allowed BMG to further promote and highlight it’s incredible collections and the amazing skills and knowledge that sit within the BMG team. John and I working together as the BMG leads on this project, has enabled us to open up the collections to new audiences and organisations. We have developed new network links and sector friendships that I’m sure will be long lasting and invaluable as we move in to the next stages of Bradford’s cultural development.