Donating objects to our collection

Brixham Heritage Museum holds around eight thousand objects, our collection has been growing since 1958, but there are still gaps.

donating an object

We welcome offers of items to our collection that have a strong connection to Brixham’s history, archaeology, natural history, art and culture. If you believe that we might be interested in objects that you own, please reach out to us by emailing or sending a written inquiry. Include the details outlined below along with accompanying images.

Please do not bring or send objects directly to the Museum as we will not accept them.

What to include in your email or letter:

  • Describe the object, including its size, condition and any signs of damage or deterioration
  • Say who made or created the object, if relevant
  • Tell us about the object’s history, who owned it, and any personal stories attached to it
  • Tell us where you got the object from
  • Confirm that you are the object’s legal owner and are happy to transfer ownership permanently to Brixham Heritage Museum
  • Send some images of the object if possible

How long does a decision take?

The curator will evaluate your object on a case-by-case basis, so please be aware that an immediate response may not be possible. If we receive a high volume of offers, it may take some time. The curator may reach out to you for additional specific details.

We will contact you to inform you of the acceptance of your object and provide instructions on when to bring it to the Museum. If urgency is required in the decision-making process, please outline the reasons in your email or letter, and we will make every effort to assist you.

How do we decide?

We judge each offer against the collection policy, which lays out the types of objects that we tend to accept.

Of particular interest are items that:

  • Have a strong connection to Brixham
  • Are in good condition
  • Have good associated information about who made / used / owned the object(s)

We are offered many objects each year and unfortunately cannot take everything we are offered.
Some of the reasons for not wanting an object include:

  • The museum already holding similar examples of the item in the collection
  • There is little associated information with the object
  • There is nothing that links the item to Brixham
  • The item is in poor condition and will be difficult or too costly to conserve
  • The item contains hazardous materials

What happens if an object is accepted?

Upon acceptance of your object into our collections, you will be required to complete and sign an Object Entry Form. This form facilitates the transfer of ownership from you to us, and a copy will be provided to you for your records.

It’s essential to understand that upon donation to our collections, the legal ownership of the object becomes ours, and you relinquish ownership. Long-term loans or objects with specific conditions attached can only be considered for specific exhibitions or displays.

Given space constraints, only a small percentage of our collection is showcased at any given time. While we strive to display objects, we cannot guarantee that your donated object will be exhibited. Rest assured, all accepted objects are stored and maintained to museum standards, making them accessible to researchers and available for potential future displays.