Museum Moves 16 – 22 June 2023

The weekly feature rounds up the latest updates in museum appointments, openings, funding and new exhibitions from across the UK.



The Design Museum has announced the appointment of a new Chief Curator, who will take up the role in September 2023. Johanna Agerman Ross will leave the V&A after seven years, where she currently serves as Curator of Twentieth Century and Contemporary Furniture and Product Design, to take up the new role.

Historic England has appointed two new Regional Directors to oversee planning advice, grants and listing in two of its regions. Tom Foxall is the new Regional Director for London and the South East, and Tom Frater will be joining Historic England as Regional Director for the North East and Yorkshire.

Suffolk museum Gainsborough’s House is in the process of appointing a new Director. Its current Director Mark Bills is to leave the role in August 2023 to begin a research project in Victorian art, in which he is a specialist.


The National Portrait Gallery opens to the public today, Thursday 22nd June 2023. Yesterday, the Princess of Wales ceremonially reopened the Gallery, after a three-year refurbishment programme, which includes a new commission by Tracy Emin at its entrance.

The Peace Museum in Bradford has announced it will move from its current city centre location, and reopen next year in a mill building in Saltaire, a nearby village and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Banchory Museum in Aberdeenshire is set to reopen this week after the completion of refurbishments. A ‘brand-new and improved museum experience’ opens to visitors from June 24th at the local history museum, which is adjoined to the Banchory library.


The Migration Museum’s first touring exhibition showcases the contributions of migrant workers to the NHS. The ‘Heart of the Nation’ exhibition will be touring nationally across locations in Leicester, Leeds and London from June 2023 – June 2024 to mark the 75th anniversary year of the NHS.. The new physical exhibition integrates and updates material from the digital exhibition, which launched online during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, and includes new stories from migrant healthcare workers based in Leicester, where the exhibition opens.

The Hayward Gallery at the Southbank Centre has this week opened a new exhibition exploring how international contemporary artists are helping to reframe responses to the climate crisis. ‘Dear Earth: Art and Hope in a Time of Crisis’ will include new commissions and feature works from more than 15 international artists, inviting visitors to consider the role of art in climate debate and activism. Runs until 3 September 2023.

The Museum of the Horse in Nottinghamshire, based in a former coaching inn, is holding an exhibition exploring the many designs of the side saddle, from this week until September 30th 2023. The exhibition includes 35 ‘unusual’ side saddles, a number of costumes, stirrups, spurs and whips, alongside illustrations.

The National Football Museum has opened a new, interactive exhibition that explores the history and development of football toys and games. ‘Batteries Not’ takes visitors through the journey of football toys from the Victorian era through to the latest VR technology. Seventeen interactive games and exhibits will be on display, including Subbuteo and a variety of classic arcade video games. Runs until 25 February 2024.

Tate Modern has announced a new exhibition of artist Philip Guston’s work. The first major UK retrospective in 20 years, it will include more than 100 paintings and drawings from across Guston’s 50-year career presented chronologically. Runs 5 October 2023 – 25 February 2024.


A research project collecting data on the closures of UK museums has been awarded £1m from the Arts and Humanities Research Council to continue its work. The Mapping Museums research project, which has already collected data from over 4,000 museums, will use the new funding for its next project, ‘Museum Closure in the UK 2000-2025’.

Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery has put on display a recently acquired panoramic landscape from Dutch landscape painter Jacob van Ruisdael. The acquisition was made with support from the government’s Acceptance in Lieu scheme, the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Art Fund and the Rought Fund, The Arts Council England/V&A Purchase Grant Fund and the Friends of the Norwich Museums. The painting is now on permanent display in its Colman Art Galleries.

The National Railway Museum has received almost £100k from The National Lottery Heritage Fund to launch a new collecting project to record the voices of railway workers from the LGBTQ+ community for the first time. ‘People, Pride and Progress’ will create up to 70 oral history interviews with people from the rail industry to document their experiences, in a move it said will “fill a gap in railway knowledge before it is lost”.

The weekly feature rounds up the latest updates in museum appointments, openings, funding and new exhibitions from across the UK.