Project Description

Mentoring and Critical Friend

Claire Adler can:

  • Advise museums and community groups on best practice in museum, science centres and heritage learning through mentoring, reports, publications and training.
  • Work with museums and community groups as their Critical Friend to question why and how they are developing their projects. This has included delivering training when appropriate and creating appropriate connections.
  • Mentor organisations run by paid staff and volunteers through the process of developing Round 1 and Round 2 NLHF projects, from under £10,000 to over £10 million.
  • Work with organisations as a Critical Friend to ask provocative questions and give an unbiased outside view of a project or organisation.

Recent Work:

Mentoring and Critical Friend

Mentor and Monitor for the National Lottery Heritage Fund

I have been an Expert Adviser for Access and Learning for the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF), formally Heritage Lottery Fund, since 2004. I have assessed, mentored and monitored projects from inception to final report from small community based projects to multi-million pound redevelopments of National Museums and Art Galleries.  I have worked on over 50 projects for NHLF to ensure that they are making the most of all of their resources and opportunities, including National Maritime Museum, Our Shared Cultural Heritage, Orchard East, Gressenhall Workhouse and Museum and the Centre for Indian Classical Dance’s Oral History Project.

Project Monitor/ Mentor for Wellcome for their Inspiring Science Fund for Dundee Science Centre

Wellcome appointed me as the monitor and mentor for Dundee Science Centre as part of their Inspiring Science Fund funding.  From 2019 I have been working with Dundee Science Centre to both establish best practice in community engagement in a science centre and also to work as a critical friend and sounding board throughout the Covid 19 pandemic.  As a result Dundee Science Centre will be reopening in 2021 a far more resilient and relevant organisation than it was at the beginning of the pandemic.

Outside of Dundee Science Centre
Temple Newsam House

Temple Newsam House, Farm and Estate

Working with Anna Salaman as Community Engagement Mentors for Temple Newsam House, Farm and Estate as part of their NLHF Resilience Grant, to think about community engagement and how the diverse site can be developed for the future.  The project will result in a Round 1 NLHF Grant for Heritage.

St Leonard’s Church

Mentor for Round 1 and Round 2 NLHF application St Leonard’s Church, Flamstead, Bedfordshire.  Working with a group of volunteers to help them understand NLHF’s processes and also to develop a project that is relevant and responsive to their local communities

Mentoring and Critical Friend

Mentoring an emerging professional

Mentor to an 18 year old as part of the London Transport Museum’s Young Freelancer programme, working with her to work out where she wants to go with her life and how to present herself to potential employers.

Mentoring and Critical Friend

South London Gallery

Critical Friend for the South London Gallery, to help them deliver a successful Activity Plan as part of their Round 2 HLF project.

Headway Cambridgeshire

critical Friend for Headway Cambridgeshire, NHS Trust, to develop a successful oral history project about the history of the treatment of people with head injuries and the history of Headway’s current site.

Mentoring and Critical Friend

SHARE Museums East

Delivering training and mentoring for SHARE East on co-creating Community Cabinets for a cross-section of volunteer, local authority and independent museums.

Hackney Museum

Critical Friend for Hackney Museum in the successful development and delivery of their second stage HLF bid for the Cultural Olympiad.

Researcher and author

Researched and wrote advocacy document about ‘What museums across the UK are doing to engage BAME and C2DE audiences through their permanent displays’ for the Natural History Museum.

Learn more about Heritage Consultant Claire Adler