Royal Armouries scoops top educational award - Monday, 19 July 2010

Britain’s oldest museum has been awarded a prestigious Sandford Award in recognition of its “exciting” and “imaginative” education programme.

The Royal Armouries works with young people aged 5 to 18 and over, covering a diverse and stimulating range of subjects – from The Suffragettes to Medieval society and government, the Slave Trade to Japanese art and design.

A judge from the Sandford Awards for Heritage Education commended the RA’s work, giving the following citation:

“The Royal Armouries is a major national collection in an inspiring building and exciting part of Leeds. Its collections are being used with great imagination and dedication to provide learning that goes way beyond ‘arms and armour’.

“Schools should see the Royal Armouries as an exciting place for enthusing pupils of all ages about a range of subjects, not only warfare and hunting. The education team is highly experienced, cohesive and immensely dedicated. Any good museum is more than the sum of its collections and they form perhaps the museum’s greatest asset.”

In his detailed report, the judge described the Royal Armouries – based at Clarence Dock in Leeds – as a “very well equipped national museum”.

He said it was encouraging to see an education programme with such a wide age span – from Early Years to AS/A Level – particularly the support given to qualifications aimed at the over 14s. These include the GCSE History Pilot – covering heritage marketing and campaigning – plus support for various travel and tourism qualifications.

The RA’s learning manager at Leeds, Gillian Waters, said, “We are delighted to have received such a constructive and complimentary report and it supports the consistently positive feedback that we get from schools. We offer a diverse and relevant programme and it’s a tribute to the staff, and RA management, that we have received such a glowing report.”

The RA at Leeds has worked with close to a 1,000 schools in the past year, and this is the first time the team has received a Sandford Award.

Media contact

Joss Loader
Tel: 07838 379599

Notes to editors

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