Experience Barnsley Museum Shortlisted

7th July 2022

Experience Barnsley Museum has been shortlisted for the Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum Award. 

Charity Kids in Museums has run a prestigious annual award for 16 years, recognising the most family-friendly heritage sites in the UK. It is the only museum award to be judged by families.

From late March to early June, families across the UK voted for their favourite heritage attraction on the Kids in Museums website. A panel of museum experts then whittled down hundreds of nominations to a shortlist of 16 heritage attractions.

Experience Barnsley Museum is vying against two other museums in the Best Accessible Museum category.

The Best Accessible Museum category celebrates museums making excellent efforts to include families with children or young people who have special educational needs and disabilities. Shortlisted museums will also be given feedback on how they can further improve their offer for families. 

Councillor Robert Frost, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place, said: “One of Barnsley Museums main objectives is to be accessible to all, we want everyone to feel welcome, safe and included when they visit.  We are delighted to have been shortlisted in this category as it is something we as an organisation feel so passionately about.”

At Experience Barnsley, visitors will uncover the incredible story of Barnsley, told through centuries-old artefacts, documents, films and recordings donated by people living and working in the Borough. Shortlisted for Museum of the Year 2021, it is a museum by the people, for the people and about the people. 

Over the summer holidays, the museum will be visited by undercover family judges who will assess the shortlisted museums against the Kids in Museums Manifesto. Their experiences will decide a winner for each award category and an overall winner of the Family Friendly Museum Award 2022. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in October.

Follow the Family Friendly Museum Award on social media by following @kidsinmuseums and #FamilyFriendlyMuseum.

The Family Friendly Museum Award has been made possible by funding from Arts Council England.

About the Family Friendly Museum Award

Kids in Museums began the Family Friendly Museum Award in 2004 to recognise heritage sites that are the most welcoming, fun and accessible for families. 

Previous winners of the Family Friendly Museum Award include the Bailiffgate Museum & Gallery in Alnwick (2021), Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum in Dunfermline (2019), Leeds City Museum (2018) and the People’s History Museum in Manchester (2017).

The full list of museums shortlisted for the Family Friendly Museum Award 2022 is: 

Best Large Museum

  • National Maritime Museum, London
  • Riverside Museum, Glasgow

Best Medium Museum

  • Discovery Museum, Newcastle Upon Tyne
  • Museum of London Docklands
  • Museum of Making, Derby
  • The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent

Best Small Museum 

  • The Egypt Centre, Swansea
  • Ely Museum
  • London Museum of Water and Steam
  • National Emergency Services Museum, Sheffield
  • The Story Museum, Oxford

Best Accessible Museum

  • Colchester Castle
  • Experience Barnsley Museum and Discovery Centre
  • National Maritime Museum, London

Best Family Engagement Team

This new category aims to recognise the dedication and innovation of museum staff and volunteers that go the extra mile to create an excellent family experience. It will be judged entirely by an expert panel.

  • Culture Coventry
  • PK Porthcurno
  • University Museum of Zoology, Cambridge

Their experiences of our undercover family judges will decide the winner for all four museum categories. An expert panel will then pick an overall winner of the Family Friendly Museum Award from the family judged categories to be announced in October 2022.

Experience Barnsley Museum Shortlisted