Ashmolean Museum secures Catalyst endowment grant

The Ashmolean Museum is one of the 13 heritage organisations to have successfully bid for a £1 million share from a pot of £8.5m to support endowments.

The grant has been awarded by the Heritage Lottery Fund through its Catalyst: Endowments programme, which is part of wider £100m+ joint initiative with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and Arts Council England. Designed to bring new money into the heritage sector, the programme offers match-funding to help heritage organisations diversify their income steams to become more sustainable and resilient by building a new endowment fund or developing an existing one, in order to increase their annual income and fundraising potential.

Professor Christopher Brown, Director of the Ashmolean said: “I am absolutely delighted that the Ashmolean has been awarded this challenge grant via the Catalyst scheme. 2013 is the Ashmolean’s 330th anniversary, and in this landmark year, this grant challenges us to raise another £1m before 2015 to help ensure the continued success and growth of one of the nation’s most long-standing, yet-dynamic, public institutions. We intend to use this grant as the name intends: as the catalyst to building a very significant endowment for the Ashmolean that will ultimately give the Museum a much more secure financial future than we currently enjoy.”

The Ashmolean will, with its Catalyst grant, launch a refreshed campaign in support of building a significant endowment for what is Britain’s first museum. In addition to helping secure the Museum’s future in the very long term, this endowment will, in the short term, support the Ashmolean’s ongoing work to engage a wide public with its very great collections through imaginative and creative interpretation, events, educational activities, exhibitions and displays.