A Day in the Life Blog: Natalie Chapman, Marketing Intern

Welcome to our blog series, ‘A Day in the Life…’ which features a member of the CMP team and what they get up to on a typical day at work. This time we’re featuring Natalie, a recent addition to the team as Marketing Intern. Read on for more about how Natalie has found her first few months at Cornwall Museums Partnership.

Natalie at University; Clare College, Cambridge

After a long month sat at home during lockdown 2.0 eagerly anticipating the start of my first full time job, I was equal parts nervous and excited to join the CMP team at the beginning of December. Earlier in the year I had completed my BA in Classics at the University of Cambridge during the first lockdown, meaning sadly I graduated remotely from my living room sofa without getting to say goodbye to the city and friends I had come to love! Needless to say, I was ready for a fresh start and this internship at CMP was the perfect opportunity for me to begin my working career (and 2021) with some positivity.

My first week in the office rushed by in a whirlwind of zoom meetings, introductions to the team and getting my head around CMP’s staggering number of partners and projects! It’s fair to say I was rather overwhelmed at first, especially as only myself and my line manager Jody were coming into the office, meaning I have only met most of the team remotely. Now of course, with the start of the third lockdown, I too am working from home full time – a prospect I would have found incredibly daunting without those initial two weeks in the office beforehand!

My role as Marketing Intern covers a wide array of duties, but I primarily spend my time running the CMP social media channels – Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I have taken over the reins on this from Jody, who has been so generous with her time in showing me the ropes, especially when it comes to using social media from a business perspective – the inner workings of analytics, hashtag audits and paid promotions have been a real learning curve for me. One of my first tasks was to create a six-week social media content planner, full of ideas for future content for me to create and schedule in advance. My favourite part of this process is definitely designing graphics on Canva – I love anything creative, so this kind of work feels more like play to me! Currently I’m planning a number of exciting social media collaborations, including a takeover with Queer Kernow to mark LGBT+ History Month coming up in February!

A WFH creative Canva session; Natalie’s photograph of a Falmouth sunrise

Aside from social media, I also regularly update the CMP website; send out monthly newsletters and produce fortnightly blogs. Thus, my typical day at work is comprised of scrolling and re-sharing on social media, copywriting, hilarious zoom team meetings, copious amounts of tea and scheduling on Tweetdeck. Now that I’m working from home I also like to take a daily nature walk to clear my head – the best time for this is golden hour so I can catch the beautiful Falmouth sunrise! After nearly two months, I have already come to love this role, which grants me the privilege of communicating to the world all the amazing work that CMP undertakes and the huge impact our charity has.

Looking back, the highlight of my CMP experience so far has got to be the staff Christmas lunch – although we couldn’t celebrate as normal this year, each member of the team received a beautiful Cornish hamper full of goodies to enjoy over a zoom lunch together, complete with festive jumpers, Christmas quiz and secret Santa presents!

The CMP 2020 Christmas lunch

Now that my training and introductory period is out of the way, I’m eager to get stuck into this role and grow as much as possible over the next 7 months – there are so many opportunities for learning from my amazing team members and CMP’s partner projects! I’m particularly looking forward to observing the Citizen Curators scheme, assisting Jody with the CMP re-brand and helping out with our Black Voices for Cornwall collaboration – plus hopefully I’ll actually be able to visit our partner museums in the Spring!

If you’d like to get in touch I’m always open to suggestions for content (be it for the CMP social media channels, newsletter or blog) and collaborations so feel free to contact me at: natalie@cornwallmuseumspartnership.org.uk.

 

– Natalie Chapman, Marketing Intern

Maps that Matter: Carefree x RCM x CMP

In the autumn of 2020, CMP supported Carefree Cornwall to deliver a project exploring maps and identity, working with the collection of Royal Cornwall Museum and children in care. Thanks to Shout Out Loud, part of English Heritage, the project was one of 14 funded nationally through the Reverberate scheme, which aims to “explore the places, voices and activities that make local heritage unique, engaging critically and creatively with the past to create a broader view of what heritage is and who owns it”.

The ‘Maps that Matter’ project started out by questioning what ‘heritage’ meant, before using objects and art works from Royal Cornwall Museum to develop and create artwork made by the young people.

A small group initially met online with Annie Sheen, Carefree’s Arts leader; Cornish visual artist, Emma Saffy Wilson and Celine Elliott, Engagement Lead for CMP. Using the online exhibition Magnificent Maps created by Kresen Kernow, the group made personal maps of journeys they have taken, talked about landmarks and the purpose of maps today and in the past.

A visit to RCM enabled the group to explore the historic collections there: pieces from the handling collection relating to travelling, such as a compass, telescope and globes were examined. Jeni Woolcock, Collections and Engagement Officer at RCM, spent time talking to the group about the possible uses and histories of the objects, providing welcome insight and context.

The museum provided the perfect inspiration for the beginning of the creative process for the group. A full day of making followed in Redruth Youth Centre and – due to the second lockdown restrictions – the subsequent exhibition was shared online with family, friends, social workers and staff at a digital ‘opening night’: the young people spoke movingly about the inspiration behind each piece they made and hugely positive feedback was shared by the ‘audience’.

The ambition is that the exhibition will be shown in the museum at some point in 2021, alongside the objects that inspired the work and the project is already in the process of being replicated and developed further at Kresen Kernow with Carefree.

 

Thank you so much to all those who took part in this amazing project, and to English Heritage for funding the scheme! You can find out more about the work being done as part of Reverberate here.

– Celine Elliott, Engagement Lead at CMP

A Day in the Life Blog: Charlotte Morgan, Programmes Manager

Welcome to our blog series, ‘A Day in the Life…’ which features a member of the CMP team and what they get up to on a typical day at work. Next up is Charlotte Morgan, Programmes Manager. Read on for more about how Charlotte spends her time at Cornwall Museums Partnership.

Being asked to contribute a blog post to this series has been a great chance to reflect on what I get up to as Collaborative Programmes Manager for CMP – especially as I am getting closer to the 6-month mark of being in the post!

My role is essentially split between two core priorities:

  1. Managing the National Portfolio Organisation (NPO) funding that CMP receives,
  2. Fundraising for future programmes of work and to protect the future of our charity.

A fair portion of my time is spent corresponding – either by email, phone, or on a video call – with the directors and staff members of the museums who form our NPO consortium. These are Bodmin Keep, Wheal Martyn, Royal Cornwall Museum, Falmouth Art Gallery, the Museum of Cornish Life, Penlee House Gallery & Museum, and PK Porthcurno. They represent such a wide variety of museums, collections, and communities across Cornwall, it’s always a pleasure to hear how they are getting on, the projects they are running, or to chat through a hurdle they’ve come up against. At the moment, a huge amount of our correspondence is Covid related – updates on opening hours, funding available, or the latest creative way the museums’ teams have pivoted to continue their amazing work serving their communities. The museums I work with never fail to amaze me with their keenness to try new things, creativity, and hard work and resilience to simply keep going.

A visit to the Museum of Cornish Life:

 

When I’m not focusing on the NPO programme, I’m usually working through a new project. On any given day this can include: a brainstorming session with a colleague, museum staff, funder, or external stakeholder; reading guidance and reports; drafting budgets; completing application forms; writing letters and emails; chatting to funders and partners on the phone or a video call; or signing paperwork. Once projects are submitted, we endure the anxious wait for a result. If successful, I am responsible for kicking off the projects – whether that means convening a project meeting or undertaking recruitment to run the programme.

On the other side of the fundraising coin is the ongoing communication I have with our funders. These can sometimes be simple email exchanges, but often we compile detailed reports and evaluation for the organisations who provide financial support for our work. When it comes to this, my colleagues are the most valuable resource. I work closest with the Programmes team: Celine, Steph, and Oliver, who between them are responsible for supporting the delivery of our NPO objectives, as well as the Museum Development programme in Cornwall, which supports many of the smaller and volunteer run organisations. Very few of my days go past without a chat with at least one of them.

What I really enjoy about my work is that every day is different – cliché, but true. I get to be involved in such a wide range of projects that CMP is working on, from the Heritage Awards, to trial technology projects, and everything in between. It also means I spend a lot of time on Excel, compiling budgets and project timelines.

2020 Heritage Awards:

 

It is so rewarding to be able to work in a role that pushes our organisation forward, providing opportunities for new areas of work. Nothing quite beats the feeling of a successful funding bid, knowing all the work that’s gone into it. Working for CMP is a real joy and privilege – this role allows me to be creative, make connections, and work collaboratively across Cornwall and the UK.

– Charlotte Morgan

Charlotte works Monday-Friday and can be reached at charlotte@cornwallmuseumspartnership.org.uk.