The Heritage Council's Museum Standards Programme for Ireland (MSPI) has awarded full accreditation to Dublin Castle State Apartments, Galway City Museum, Highlanes Gallery in Drogheda, and Rathfarnham Castle, who have achieved the highest standard in recognition of their work in collection care, governance, and visitor care and access.
Eight museums - Cavan County Museum, Drogheda Museum Millmount, The Glucksman in Cork, Kerry County Museum, Muckross House, Muckross Traditional Farms, Muckross House Research Library and Tipperary County Museum, retained the Full Accreditation they had previously been awarded.
A further four museums - Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, Seanchaí - Kerry Writers' Museum, The Heritage Centre (Royal College of Physicians of Ireland) and The Little Museum of Dublin - were awarded Interim Accreditation.
In a ceremony marking the awards at Dublin Castle, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, said
"I am delighted to present these awards in this tenth anniversary year for the Museum Standards Programme Initiative.
Maintaining and cherishing our museums is of great importance to me and I was very pleased recently to be able to announce funding of almost €135,000 for twenty-three projects around the country under the Local and Regional Museums Funding Scheme 2017.
At a local level there has been great work done to raise the standards of care across Irish museums, and I would like to congratulate and thank all those involved, especially those who are receiving awards here today."
The newly appointed Chairman of the Heritage Council, Mr. Michael Parsons, added, "What we see through this programme is that Ireland's museums are exciting and vibrant places where the staff are working hard, often with very limited budgets and resources, to ensure that the collections in their care are protected and made available to the public. Not only is this important work from a cultural point of view, it also supports tourism in a locality and helps people feel proud of the place where they live".
Mr. Parsons said that taking part in a museum standards programme is a public promise by each museum to care for the heritage of its community. Achieving accreditation in the MSPI demonstrates that a museum is meeting its promise.
"Through MPSI, the Heritage Council is working to improve all aspects of Ireland's museum practice and, in particular, to raise the standards of care for collections across Irish museums and galleries. A voluntary programme, it has attracted involvement across the cultural spectrum, from national institutions to small, volunteer-led organisations", concluded Mr. Parsons.
The Museum Standards Programme for Ireland (MSPI), which started in 2006 with just 12 participants, now has 57 museums across the island of Ireland, participating in it. The programme recognises excellence in caring for collections, museum management, education, exhibition and visitor services.