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Nationally styled museums

Nationally-styled museums are museums which are not National Museums: they were not established by national legislation and are not significantly funded directly by central or devolved Government however they are marketed with a national name. Examples include the National Football Museum and the Scottish Fisheries Museum.

Accreditation characteristics and criteria for such museums are enhanced as a nationally-styled name leads to a public expectation in terms of facilities and scope and scale of the collection. The museum will offer visitor facilities appropriate to a national organisation. It will hold and acquire a collection of national significance and international interest, providing excellent engagement opportunities through exhibitions, displays, learning, and research opportunities.

Nationally-styled names include the following, or equivalent words:

International, World, Nation, National, Europe, European, Commonwealth, Empire, United Kingdom, Great Britain, Britain, British, England, English, Wales, Welsh, Cymru, Cymreig, Scotland, Scottish, na h-Alba, Ulster, Norther Ireland and Northern Irish.

Nationally-styled names for museum are considered at eligibility stage for a new application from a museum and at this stage a site visit is usually undertaken to discuss the appropriateness of the name of the museum.

For museums already participating in the Scheme and where they have rebranded using a nationally-styled name, the assessing body will also consider the appropriateness of the name of the museum and may make additional recommendations in relation to this.

There are additional questions on the online form that national museums and museums styling themselves as ‘national’ or equivalent should complete. Full details of the national and nationally styled requirements within Accreditation are published in the Accreditation Guidance 2018.

A reference copy of the questions is available to download here however these should be completed as part of the online form.

Should you have any queries about Accreditation please contact the Northern IreIand Accreditation Assessor at or call on 028 9055 0215.