Skip to content

Festival of Museums

Festival of Museums

All museums and galleries in Scotland are invited to take part in the Festival of Museums. The next Festival of Museums will take place from 18 to 20 May 2018. Festival of Museums is a project created and coordinated by Museums Galleries Scotland. The weekend coincides with Museums at Night and European museum celebrations such as Nuit des Musees.

The purpose of Festival of Museums is twofold. It offers museums the opportunity to plan events that raise their profile amongst their existing and potential visitors and stakeholders. It supports museums to develop skills in planning and delivering sustainable and enterprising events.  

Why take part?

You can choose what type of event you wish to stage. Consider your target audience and develop an event that will be entertaining to them. Plan how you will market your event to your target audience.

Some of the benefits of taking part include: 

  • Support from MGS staff 
  • The potential to benefit from added publicity on top of what you generate yourself. Each year we select a number of PR highlight events to feature in the local and national PR campaign. To be a potential PR highlight museums respond to our information requests promptly to avoid disappointment.
  • Event listings on MGS also shares event listings with Culture24 and other listings outlets.
  • Access to free poster templates and banners to display outside your venue
  • Access to a free Festival of Museums toolkit
  • Blogs and webinars to help you plan and deliver a successful event
  • You receive data gathered from your visitors – data which you can use for future event planning.  


To help you in planning and running your event, MGS offers a series of free webinars. This year plans are to run sessions on:

  • Event planning (15 November with The Tall Ship - participants from last year) - view the webinar
  • Income generation (20 February with Ruthanne Baxter of Edinburgh University Museums) - view the webinar
  • Regional promotion (4 April, 2pm)

We record each webinar, so you can also view those produced last year for inspiration - topics include effective PR, event planning and evaluation. Visit our Vimeo page to see more. We also tweet using #FoMwebinars 

PR and Marketing Resources

Our PR toolkit has been produced in collaboration with PR agency Stripe Communications, and will help your museum get the most from this year’s festival and maximise your local media coverage and social media engagement. 

Click here to download the PR Toolkit

We provide poster templates in variety of formats to help you promote your Festival of Museums events. These are particularly useful for museums who don’t have their own designers or marketing department, or who are just short on time. You are also welcome to produce your own marketing materials if you are confident doing so, and the logo and brand guidlines are available to download below. 


Click here to download the Festival of Museums poster templates

Festival of Museums funding

The 2018 Festival of Museums funding round is now closed.

Museums Galleries Scotland offers grant funding annually to Accredited museums wanting to stage a Festival of Museums event. Funding encourages Festival of Museums participants to aim to run events that cover at least some of their own costs, but preferably, break even. It would be even better if they bring in a little profit!

The MGS grant will cover up to 50% of event costs. Applicants are asked to make sure that at least 25% of their event costs are covered by income generated through the event or funding sources other than MGS or their own organisations. The remaining 25% can be covered by their own organisation.  


You can get in touch with our Festival of Museums project manager if you have any questions about taking part.

Sarah Burry-Hayes
Marketing Manager
Telephone: 0131 550 4133


Follow us on Twitter @FestofMuseums