Sport in Museums Network – a resource for the study of British sport history


The Sport in Museums Network was originally established as the Sports Heritage Network (SHN) in 2003 to promote interest in Britain’s unique sports heritage. In 2013 the National Sports Museum Online was created to begin to chart a clear, accessible picture of sporting collections in the UK, where they are held, and how to access them. The aim is for the website to become a national database of sporting collections in the long-term.

The network places an emphasis on professional development and providing support for organisations across the country to better understand, protect, and provide access to the nations sporting heritage. With a primary emphasis on supporting museums, the network encourages and actively promotes partnerships with organisations across a wide variety of sectors including heritage, education, health, sport and tourism.

The National Sports Museum Online website list a large number of collections in the UK, grouped geographically (with an interactive map) as well as by sport. We recommend a visit to the site; it’s an easy ride, just click here. Incidentally, one of the museum listed is the National Horse Racing Museum in Newmarket, which this editor warmly recommends for an enlightening visit.

The current Network program include two points of particular interest:

Sport in Museums Network Conference 2016: “Why does sporting heritage matter?” in Nottingham, 11th February 2016.

Why does sporting heritage matter? Our next conference examines the role and impact of sport in museums. It aims to use the day as a focus point for understanding more about why sporting heritage, and its delivery through different organisations including museums, is both important in and of itself, but also how it impacts on wider agendas for example health, education, and sports participation.

For more information about the event, our call for contributors, or to book a place, please visit the conference website at

Sport in Museums Journal – pilot programme: Call for contributions

As part of our development programme over the next three years, we are investigating the potential to deliver a Sport in Museums Journal. At this stage, the journal will be very light touch and aims to understand if there is an appetite for both contributing and reading the journal.

As a pilot programme, and to complement the theme of our forthcoming conference, this edition will focus on the impact of sport in museums and wider sporting heritage. In the first instance the journal will be downloadable for free. The contents will be drawn from across the sector and it is hoped as many people as possible will contribute. As a result, we are already looking for contributions! If you would like to submit an article, please ensure it is no more than 1500 words and include the following information:

• Your contact details
• Your organisation (where relevant)
• Article title
• Focus of the article – What did you do? why did you do it? what was the impact? on who, how and why? did it change practices? do you have any follow up plans? was the activity evaluated?
• Images! If at all possible, and please confirm that you have permission for us to use them in the journal

Email your article to by 5pm on the 11th December 2015.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.