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Decolonising Amgueddfa Cymru’s Collection – the journey begins

The Amgueddfa Cymru Decolonising Group, 6 December 2021

Museums and their collections are often rooted in colonialism and racism – Amgueddfa Cymru is no different. 

The Black Lives Matter movement has fast-tracked conversations about the stories that our collections and displays present, calling for us to confront history and challenge present-day injustices.  

We know that we have a lot of work to do to make sure that everyone is represented in our collection and present a more balanced, authentic, and decolonised account of history. To help us with this work, we have developed a Charter for decolonising Amgueddfa Cymru’s collection.

We are recruiting for a Project Manager, Decolonising Collections. The closing date is 13 December - apply now to be part of the de-colonization of the national collections.

Defining 'decolonising'

There is no single definition that explains exactly what decolonising means, so our Charter lays out what it means for Amgueddfa Cymru. It defines 6 areas where we will work collaboratively with communities of relevance on the journey towards decolonising the collection.  

We are currently carrying out an audit of our collection. Our findings to date show that links to slavery are woven into the warp and weft of Welsh society. Objects that need to be decolonised are in every store, on every shelf, and in every gallery.  

Over the next few months, we will begin a programme of community workshops to look more closely at these objects. To give you an idea of the kinds of objects we will be looking at together, here are a few examples from the collection.  

Anglesey penny

Comments (3)

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Jayne Murphy Amgueddfa Cymru – Museum Wales Staff
28 March 2022, 09:56

FAO: Heartland Patriot

Thank you for writing to Amgueddfa Cymru concerning the article ‘Decolonising Amgueddfa Cymru’s Collection – the journey begins’.

The intention of decolonisation is not to erase history, or the history of the object, but to work collaboratively with communities to develop multiple perspectives to support a better understanding and deeper meaning. Decolonising the collection will mean that we have more information about objects, not less. We will be able to present a more balanced, authentic and decolonised account of history.

Yours sincerely

Amgueddfa Cymru

Heartland Patriot
17 March 2022, 15:09
I spent some few years the UK, many years past now. As an American, I was fascinated by all the local and national history surrounding me seemingly at every turn, and how much effort had gone into preserving and sharing that history with the public. So, to see this sort of article, where the only effort is to now tear down that history to push a radical multiculti, globalist agenda, sickens me. I'm almost certain this comment will bring you much mirth and laughter, as you go along wrecking things to aid and appease a fringe group of extremists and nutters. When people find that they no longer care about your museum, and they stop showing up, don't be surprised when you find yourselves looking for new employment, or perhaps even on the dole.
S Borrett
14 December 2021, 20:18
Why should we be ashamed of our history. I'm proud of my country and this seemingly constant shaming of the UK and rewriting/ hiding our past is shameful. There are parallels with Isis/ Taliban with this trend. You are wasting tax payers money creating a nonsensical position at your museum. Take the politics out of the museum, 99% of people aren't offended with their contents/ displays.