If you’d like to ask us a question about the collections, please contact us at museumandarchivecollections@barnsley.gov.uk   We aim to respond to enquiries within seven working days.  If you don’t have access to email please call Experience Barnsley on 01226 772500 to make your enquiry. 

Frequently asked questions

How do I donate an item to Barnsley Museums?

We’re always looking for ways to develop the collections, which includes acquiring new objects and archives. If you have an item you would like to donate, we’d love to hear from you.  Please get in touch at the email address above.

To help us decide what to take in, we have Collections Development Policies for each of our sites.  These documents are available on request, but if you don’t fancy the long read, here’s an idea of what we consider:

  • Do we have one already or something similar?
  • What condition is it in?
  • How does it fit with the rest of the collection?
  • What story does it tell?
  • What future would it have for display or research?

Are all the museum collections on display?

All of Barnsley’s museum collections are extremely important and are all precious pieces of Barnsley’s heritage.  We are unfortunately not able to display all of the collections or guarantee that a donated object will always be on display.  We plan regular changes of displays in the museums, as well as temporary exhibitions, to bring items out of storage, and to make sure visitors have the opportunity to see the great variety of objects and stories.  We are now also able to make a lot of the collections available for people to see online, through photography and our website and online database.  

How do I find out more about something on display or in store?

You may like to find out more about an item which is on display, or an item currently held in storage, and we’re happy to help.  Please email us and we can provide you with information we hold or you can make an appointment with one of our curatorial team to view the item.

Can you help with my research?

Whether you just want to ask a quick question or if you’re working on a larger project, we’ll help wherever we can.  We’re not able to carry out research for people, but we can provide you with information from our records or give you an idea where to look or who to contact. 

Can I borrow items from the collections?

We lend objects and artworks to museums and galleries around the world and welcome loan requests to increase access to the collections.  Loan requests should be made at least six months in advance, and where several objects are requested or the loan is international, requests should be made nine months in advance.  Informal discussions are welcome before a formal request is made.  All borrowers need to demonstrate they can provide and maintain suitable facilities and appropriate conditions and will be asked to complete UKRG documentation.