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Comedy Project Highly Commended at Woodhorn

May 11th 2015

An innovative project at Woodhorn Museum connecting people to their history and heritage through a comedian in residence has received national recognition at a glittering award ceremony.

Stand Up for Woodhorn: Making a Case for Comedy in Museums, secured the Highly Commended award in the Project on a Limited Budget category at the prestigious Museums + Heritage Awards for Excellence 2015.

Speaking about the commendation, Woodhorn Director Keith Merrin said, “We are thrilled that our project has been recognised in the Awards. Having a stand-up comedian in residence in a museum seemed like a crazy idea but in fact turned out to be a brilliant way to reach new audiences and help people in our community share their own memories of coal mining and local history. We hope that other museums will follow our lead and bring more humour and comedy into their work.”

Museums and visitor attractions from across the UK were recognised for their remarkable achievements at the presentations. The winners and runners-up in each of the 10 hard-fought categories were announced by comedian and TV personality Marcus Brigstocke at the Historic State Rooms of 8 Northumberland Avenue in central London. Regarded as the Oscars of the museums and heritage world, the Awards ceremony was attended by hundreds of sector professionals who joined to celebrate the incredible achievements and ground-breaking projects of the past 12 months.

Now celebrating its thirteenth year, the annual Awards, created by the sector’s largest event, The Museums + Heritage Show, recognised the leading lights of the heritage sector and celebrated excellence and innovation at museums, galleries and visitor attractions across the UK and Europe.

Bernard Donoghue, Director, ALVA and a member of the judging panel, said, “These awards recognise the amazing achievements, creativity, innovation, hard work and utter commitment evident throughout the museums and heritage sector.  The number of applications, of really impressive quality, grows year after year as the awards have become the benchmark for excellence. If you are shortlisted, let alone win one of these awards, you know you are among the best of the best.”

The Awards were judged by a panel of sector experts including: Diana Owen, Director, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust; Maggie Appleton, Chief Executive Officer, Royal Air Force Museum; Stephen Duncan, Director of Commercial and Tourism, Historic Scotland; Bernard Donoghue, Director, ALVA; Diane Lees, Director General, Imperial War Museums; Matthew Tanner, Director and Chief Executive of the ss Great Britain Trust and Sam Mullins, Director, London Transport Museum.

Anyone interested in reading more about the project should take a look at the blog: