The galleries, libraries, archives and museums across the UK and Republic of Ireland that make up our membership have all been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. Whether you’ve fully reopened, are tentatively returning to work or your performing arts collections are closed for now, we’ve gathered together guidance, support and best practice from across our sector which we hope can give you confidence in your decisions and actions in the uncertain months still ahead.

MA (Museums Association)

The Museums Association have a provided a resource page of the information, support and leadership that the museum sector needs during the Covid-19 pandemic. The new content, practical advice, professional support and funding guidance will be of much use to our members from the museum and gallery sectors. Topics covered include:

  • Supporting museums to get involved in the Kickstart Scheme
  • Staying connected with their Workforce Covid Support Group for furloughed staff and those at risk of redundancy
  • Funding to bring people closer to collections
  • The Managing in Crisis Facebook group acting as a safe space to connect
  • Good practice guidelines for reopening museums
  • A statement on support needed to reopen the museum sector
  • Organisational and Employment FAQs

CILIP (The Library and Information Association)

CILIP have created a Coronavirus Information Service in which our members working in libraries, special collections and information and knowledge management can find guidance and best practice advice. Their Service encourages members to complete the CILIP COVID-19 Workforce Survey. Information also provided includes:

  • Developing a Service Recovery Plan
  • Promoting Libraries and Information Services during COVID-19
  • Undertaking a COVID-19 Risk Assessment
  • Staff and volunteer welfare and PPE
  • Creating ‘COVID secure’ physical spaces
  • Managing IT access and equipment
  • Books and resource circulation and browsing
  • Sources of financial help and advice
  • CILIP Benevolent Fund ‘COVID-19 Emergency Fund’

ARA (Archives and Records Association)

ARA have developed their ARA Together Support Hub for all members as well as all archives and record keeping services in the sector as a whole. The aim of the support hub is to signpost a wide range of reliable online resources that provide valuable information and guidance throughout this period. Provided is:

  • Access to ARA Together’s Online Community
  • Content generated from the Online Community
  • ARA’s own news and policies relating to COVID-19
  • Support and practical help from the heritage sector
  • Tips for staying engaged with your own professional development
  • Other Learning and CPD opportunities to explore
  • Support relating to health and wellbeing

TNA (The National Archives)

The National Archives Coronavirus Response and Guidance webpages offer valuable advice on making plans to reopen, their own coronavirus response and guidelines, and other useful resources. Their guidance can be used for:

  • Operational planning and checklists for reopening
  • Practical advice relating to Accreditation and Places of Deposit
  • Guidance from the Information Commissioner’s Office on FOI and Data Protection during the pandemic
  • Conservation guidance on starting to use collections again

BAC (Business Archives Council)

The Business Archives Council’s notes from their Covid-19 Lockdown tea-break online discussion sessions have been made available. Sessions focused on The call to collect: Business archives and COVID-19, Business in a pandemic, and Business archives and online engagement.

ACE (Arts Council England)

Arts Council England’s Covid-19 Support pages provide the latest advice, guidance and emergency funding measures the Arts Council, government and several external organisations have put in place to address the Covid-19/coronavirus crisis.

ICON (The Institute of Conservation)

The Institute of Conservation has created a Coronavirus Guidance page providing information to keep ICON staff and members safe and to support those working across the cultural heritage sector who are affected by the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Their pages include information on;

  • Their advocacy for conservation and conservation professionals
  • Continuing Professional Development opportunities
  • Collection Care advice
  • Guidance on reopening historic building and sites safely
  • Business Support for organisations and freelancers
  • The ICON Online Community via Discord

AIM (Association of Independent Museums)

AIM has developed a Coronavirus Resources page to support members following the outbreak of COVID-19.

SCONUL (Society of College, National and University Libraries)

SCONUL provides a members-only SCONUL and Covid-19 resource page which provides support through the current crisis. This includes:

  • Resources for SCONUL members dealing with Covid-19
  • Resources relating to re-opening the physical library
  • Members webinars to discuss responses to the crisis
  • Advocacy on behalf of members on access to content and copyright


What connects our members’ collections? Here we put a spotlight on some of the curious themes that tie us together.