Temple Newsam House in Leeds has been successful in securing £90,000 funding from Arts Council England’s Designation Development fund. The funding was awarded to Leeds Museums & Galleries and their Designated collection of decorative arts in order to support the proposed project titled Grief, Joy and Togetherness.

The project aims to improve visitor the experience in new and engaging ways to tell the stories of Temple Newsam throughout its 40 historic rooms.

The Designation Development fund recognises the importance of excellent collections and provides funding for projects that aim to promote long-term sustainability, maximise public value and usability of museum collections.

Pete Massey, Director, North, Arts Council England, said:

“Congratulations to Leeds Museums and Galleries who have been awarded Designation Development funding to undertake the Grief, Joy and Togetherness project. The project is a great way of bringing to life the history of Temple Newsam and the people who once occupied it. Temple Newsam is an incredibly important heritage asset for the region and country so I look forward to discovering more about the history of the house and the people associated with it.” 

Temple Newsam will consider the collections of fine and decorative art together with the personal narratives of past residents of the house. Taking the portraits within the house as a starting point, the project will explore connections between objects and people and hopes to unearth intriguing stories to engage the public. 

This improved interpretation of the historic rooms and social history will enrich the visitor offer alongside the already popular guided tours and audio tour. 

The project will develop a framework of socially engaged narratives collaboratively with local community groups and working with partners across the city. A series of workshops will interrogate history of the collections and delve into the people behind the objects. 

John Roles, Head of Leeds Museums & Galleries, said:

“We are thrilled to have been awarded Designation Development funding for this project from Arts Council England. This important project gives us the opportunity to look more closely at the history of our wonderful collections but also the social history of the estate and draw these two narratives more closely together. We look forward to working on this collaboratively with local communities.”

This funding comes at a timely point in the history of this magnificent mansion, as 2020 marks the 500 year anniversary of the building of Temple Newsam. In this period Temple Newsam will be reflecting on the past, but also considering what the future looks like.

Sign up to our mailing list to gain access to our special offers and download our latest brochure!

For great days out sign up to our mailing list! Join to receive the Latest News and Special Offers from Yorkshire’s Great Castles & Gardens.