Researching RAMM’s collections
20 January 2013
A new grant from the Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund (EFCF) will enable RAMM to link its collections research priorities with the interests of universities and researchers.
The 12-month project will result in a digital Collections Prospectus allowing specialists and academics to discover artefacts that are in RAMM’s collections store and learn how they could be useful to their research. Researchers will gain greater access to the collections and RAMM will benefit from their research findings.
The prospectus is part of a wholesale review of RAMM’s collections: almost one million objects in all. There are many wonderful well-known objects in the collections, including the 8,000 objects on display in the new museum. Little is known about other objects and further research will shine a light on them, unlock their secrets and provide interpretation for our audiences.
Initially the Collections Prospectus will focus on archaeological material excavated in Devon and Exeter since 1945, including stored material such as faunal remains (animal bones), recent Roman finds, Medieval and post-medieval potter, Palaeolithic stone tools and lithic scatters.
RAMM is also leading the development of a regional collections prospectus in collaboration with PlymouthCityMuseum, its MajorPartnerMuseums, Somerset Museums Service and the RoyalCornwallMuseum.
Funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, the EFCF scheme supports time-bound projects that develop collections outside the scope of an organisation’s core resources. Competition for the grants is fierce; in this round only six projects were selected from 49 applications.