Cornwall Heritage Awards 2020

There are more than 70 museums in Cornwall of great variety and individuality, including; art galleries, castles, mines, historic properties, industrial heritage sites and tiny community museums. Many more collections are held in community archives. Cornwall’s diverse heritage organisations offer something unique and special, they provide fantastic services for their communities and achieve high standards.

Cornwall Museums Partnership and SW Museum Development recognise the excellence within these organisations, and believe there is a lot we can learn together and from each other. We want to reward the wonderful work you do, and share your achievements.

Cornwall Heritage Awards will celebrate our museums and heritage organisations. It will raise profile within our local communities, across Cornwall, and within the wider heritage sector. It will showcase your best practice and share your great ideas. To do this we are working with some exciting media partners including BBC Radio Cornwall.


2020 Award Categories

Innovation – a new initiative, digital project or way of working that has made your organisation more resilient in the long term.

Best Festival, Event or Exhibition – an award for a temporary yet impactful event, exhibition or festival

Environmental Impact – any initiative that has made your organisation more sustainable and environmentally accountable, no matter how small the project.

Community Initiative – a project where you have worked with partners to address a local need.

Wellbeing Museum– what initiatives and activities do you provide that encourage healthy and active lifestyles for your volunteers, staff or visitors?

Heritage Heroes – an opportunity to celebrate the work of a volunteer team who have achieved something special this year.

One to Watch – say thank you to a young volunteer with a nomination for an award. This category is open for nominations of people under 25.

Weird and Wonderful – Object of the Year – every museum has a number of amazing, awe-inspiring and downright peculiar objects that have the potential to grab the headlines. This category will be decided through an online public vote. It is an opportunity to raise profile and reach wide public attention.

Judges’ Special Award – This will be awarded to the excellent project or organisation that the judges feel most merits additional commendation. It will be selected from applications for categories 1-5.

Organisations will nominate their own projects for consideration. The work you nominate must have been undertaken during the last year.


Award Ceremony

A celebratory Heritage Awards ceremony announcing the results will take place at;

Royal Cornwall Showground Pavilion Centre, near Wadebridge

26 March 2020


How will it work?

Museums and heritage organisations will be able to nominate their work for one or more categories (1-8) using the appropriate application form. Organisations can submit more than one application for each award or nominate the same project for different categories – please note there is different criteria for each category and applications should be tweaked to it.

The closing date for applications is 5 pm on 12 December 2019. There will be no extension.

The assessment process will take into consideration the scale of your organisation and the impact your project has made. Please make sure relevant details are included in your application so assessors can make informed decisions.

Each category will be shortlisted by a panel. A maximum of 3 applications will be shortlisted for each award. All applicants will be informed of the outcome of the shortlisting process by 27 January.

If your project is shortlisted, you will be invited to submit further details in support of your application such as; background information, visitor comments, photographs or other information. Judging will be undertaken during December-February by a panel of independent experts. The final results will be announced at the Heritage Awards ceremony.

Heritage Awards 2019


Why should your organisation take part?

This is a great opportunity for you to shout about your achievements. Heritage Awards is designed to recognise and reward achievement, inspire pride, raise the profile of your organisation and of all museums and heritage organisations in Cornwall.

There will be framed certificates for all shortlisted and winning museums. Every organisation will have the potential to benefit from the publicity created.

Last year we generated more than 20 pages of newspaper copy, 10 radio interviews and a huge social media reach. We will showcase each category online and will work with BBC Radio Cornwall and local press to generate coverage for shortlisted museums.

Each shortlisted application will be profiled at the awards ceremony and best practice case studies will be produced for the CMP website. The ceremony allows a great opportunity to network with other heritage organisations and funders.

Awards and achievements help to inspire a sense of trustworthiness, pride and credibility. Entering the awards is a great way of offering recognition to your team. Winners of each category will receive a plaque and shortlisted museums will receive a certificate of commendation.



To take part in the Heritage Awards scheme your organisation must be a heritage site, museum or archive with a heritage collection, even a small one, that is accessible to the public.

To ensure we celebrate success across the full scale and breadth of heritage organisations, some awards are limited to smaller organisations, others have separate awards for both small and larger organisations, and some awards will be open to all museums together (see table below).

Further details are on the individual application forms, where  we will ask you to confirm which category your organisation fits:

  • Larger organisations – those with 2 or more than 2 full-time equivalent* members of staff, or those managed/supported by a larger structure (e.g. The National Trust, CMP National Portfolio museums, English Heritage sites etc.).
  • Small organisations – Any volunteer run organisation, or an organisation that has less than 2 full-time equivalent* members of staff.

*Excluding support staff, such as maintenance or catering teams.

If you are uncertain which category your organisation or project fits into, please get in touch.






Innovation X
Best Event, Festival Or Exhibition X
Environmental Impact X X
Community Initiative X
Wellbeing Museum X X
Heritage Heroes X
One To Watch X
Object of the Year X



Bryony Robins; Museum Development Officer;

We hope you feel inspired – good luck!


Application Forms


Best Festival, Event or Exhibition

Environmental Impact

Community Initiative

Wellbeing Museum

Heritage Heroes

One to Watch

Object of the Year

Please return your completed application form(s) to Bryony Robins at or Heritage Awards, Cornwall Musuems Partnership, Studio 101, Krowji, West Park, Redruth, Cornwall, TR15 3AJ


Terms and Conditions