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SHARE Volunteer Awards *2020 Nominations NOW CLOSED*

The Volunteer Awards scheme began in 2014, to celebrate and recognise volunteering work around the region. Volunteers play a fundamental role in caring for and interpreting our heritage and culture and helping to make it accessible for all.


Thank you all for putting in your nominations, and this year 65 nominations have come in from all over the region. Given the recommendations provided by the government we are currently unable to host the planned celebration at Bressingham on 2 June. We are currently working on different ways to make sure all nominees get their certificates and trophies, and hopefully an opportunity to visit Bressingham later in the year.

We will be emailing all the nominators in the coming weeks to let you know how things are progressing.

Thank you also to our panel of judges who are shortly reviewing nominations and for helping us through this time. 


The Volunteer awards 2020 nominations are now closed for any museum within the Arts Council England Accreditation scheme. The deadline to return nominations is  13th March 2020.

If you are unsure whether your museum is eligible to apply, please contact your County Museum Development Officer.

Nominations can be sent to our SHARE Volunteer Awards inbox. When sending in forms, please mark clearly in your email the number of applications attached and the nominees’ names. Due to the high number of applications we receive, a receipt of confirmation may not be sent immediately.

Please call us on 01694 495881 or email us and a member of our team will pick up your query.

The Nomination form can be downloaded here2020 Nomination Form final


This year we have broadened the categories and hope that you will be inspired to make some nominations.

All categories are open to both teams and individuals – except for Silver Owl Award which is for individuals only. Team and individual awards will be considered separately.

  1. Digital Volunteering Award: Examples of this might be for setting up, or operating the museum’s social media accounts, keeping the website up-to- date, or working on digital museum projects.
  2. Outstanding Young Volunteer Award: For under 25s who have excelled in their volunteer role and made a strong contribution to the museum.
  3. True Grit Award: For people who have persevered with a difficult, awkward, tedious or challenging task over a long period of time, battling against difficulties and continuing despite the odds!
  4. Through the Door Award: For people who have made the museum relevant for a new group of people. Examples would be setting up a new service at the museum for toddlers, or people with specific needs.
  5. Trustee Award: This award recognises outstanding contributions from Trustees (or unpaid governors) who set strategy and direct the work of our museums.
  6. Silver Owl Award: This award is open to any volunteers who have been volunteering at their museum for at least 25 years. Everyone nominated will be given the award.


The awards ceremony will be on 2nd June, at Bressingham Steam Museum and Gardens near Diss. Nominators will be contacted with invitations to the ceremony after the deadline to return all nomination forms. Light refreshments will be provided of which will be half vegetarian and there will be some gluten and dairy free options. The closest train station to Bressingham is Diss; you will then need to get a taxi to the museum. The museum has a large car park and is free.


At the 2018 Volunteer awards we had a total of 68 nominations from 35 museums. The ceremony was held at the Museum of East Anglian Life.


  • The Collections Team from Epping Forest District Museum & Lowewood Museum (Collections Champion Award)
  • Frank Andow from Museum of Power (Digital Volunteering Award)
  • Lib Fox from Colchester & Ipswich Museums (Volunteer Leadership Award)
  • The Print Workshop Team from the Museum of East Anglian Life (Learning Award)
  • Natasha Harlock from Norfolk & Suffolk Aviation Museum (Outstanding Young Volunteer Award)
  • John McKee from Braintree District Museum (Trustee Award)
  • Colin Seal from Sheringham Museum (Visitor Experience Award)
  • The Learning & Galleries Team with HYPP from The Higgins Museum (‘We couldn’t do without’ Award)

Judges’ Special Award:

  • The Trustees from St Albans Museums

Highly Commended:

  • Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse Research Team (Digital Volunteering Award)
  • Casey Hobbs from Stories of Lynn (Outstanding Young Volunteer Award)
  • Barry Knight from St Albans Museums (Collections Champion Award)
  • The logistics Team from Cambridge Museum of Technology (‘We couldn’t do without’ Award)
  • Julia Good from St Albans Museums (Volunteer Leadership Award)
  • The Walled Garden Team from the Museum of East Anglian Life (Visitor Experience Award)
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