Designated Collections

Designation is a mark of distinction. It is an accolade celebrating unique collections of national and international importance. Explore these fascinating and diverse collections held in museums, galleries and archives with Culture24 news stories, features, events, links and more...

a photo of a British soldier in camouflage gea, backpack, rifle and helmet in the field in Afghanistan

Royal Engineers Museum tells the story of the Corps today and yesterday

Get a sneak preview of new galleries The Corps Today and Early Engineers, which are about to tell tales from the frontline and beyond at Chatham's Royal Engineers Museum.

The Horniman Merman

Haslemere Educational Museum borrows the Horniman Museum's Merman

The Haslemere Educational Museum is borrowing the Horniman Museum's Mysterious Merman, which will be on display at the Surrey collection until September 30 2011.

a Lowry painting showing thousands of matchstick figures heading towards a railway station

Collections at Royal Academy, Staffordshire Archives and English Folk Dance & Song Society become Designated

"Compelling" archives run by the Royal Academy of Arts, the English Folk Dance and Song Society and Staffordshire Authorities are honoured by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council.

Rush Hour on Tyne Bridge by John Coatsworth, 2010

Painting the Toon: John Coatsworth at the Discovery Museum

The distinctive 'bendy' artist gets the his first solo exhibition in Newcastle city centre

A photo of a manuscript in black ink on mottled paper

Bodleian Library seals first Jane Austen manuscript at hotly-contested auction

The correction-littered first draft of Austen’s unfinished The Watsons will become one of the earliest surviving novels on display in Britain as it heads to Oxford.

A photo of a man holding a carved head

Curator's Choice: The reconstructed head of a Neolithic woman at the Museum of London

The Senior Curator in Prehistory at the Early London History and Collections department introduces us to a 5,500-year-old Neolithic woman found in Shepperton.

An abstract painting in shades of cream, pink and light blue

High endnote for Cy Twombly in show with Poussin at Dulwich Picture Gallery

Contrasts abound in a show which pairs exhuberant abstract work by the late 20th century painter with the classical compositions of a 17th century master.

a painting of a man in a Georgian powdered wig

Compton Verney salutes 'Capability’ Brown and the landscapes he created in middle England

Set in its own ‘Capability’ Brown landscape, Compton Verney is the ideal location for the first ever exhibition about landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.

A photo of a man in denim clothing reading a book about heavy metal

In Pictures: Home of Metal makes noisy arrival at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

Rock and roll comes to Birmingham in a show celebrating the musical heritage of the Midlands.

A photo of a landscape through a lens

Stories from Iraq and Afghanistan in Gunners Today at Firepower Royal Artillery Museum

A dramatic and poignant new show brings life on the frontline into sharp focus at the Royal Artillery Museum.

A photo of a young female singer

From Sid James to Amy Winehouse: Entertaining the Nation at the Jewish Museum

Stars including Brian Epstein, Sid James, Peter Sellers and Simon Amstell star in a high-profile celebration of showbiz at the Jewish Museum.

A photo of a mannequin in an olive-coloured dress in a display case

Stephen Jones picks Vivienne Westwood number as Dress of the Year, Fashion Museum

The John Galliano and Jean Paul Gaultier collaborator reveals a Westwood cut with ripped hems as the star exhibit in Bath.

a cartographic style drawing of a country house and gardens

Archaeologists uncover Medieval predecessor to Harewood House at Gawthorpe Hall

Archaeologists are excavating the remains of Gawthorpe Hall, the predecessor of Yorkshire’s Harewood House.

A photo of a stash of gold coins

Curator's Choice: Ipswich Museum curator Caroline McDonald's Wickham Market Hoard

As the hoard of Iron Age coins goes on sneak preview to the public, we find out about Ipswich Museum's plans to save it.

Finding Adam: Jacob Epstein's Modern British Sculpture masterpiece back at Harewood House

An imposing Jacob Epstein alabaster carving of a primitive idol ends a 50-year journey by returning to the Yorkshire site.

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