Our Work

Our work can be divided into five areas: collections development, exhibitions, events, learning and projects. The way we tackle these areas is set out in the museum's Business Plan .

Collections Development

We have combined our collections policies into one document called the Collections Management Framework. The framework includes:

Collections Development Policy
We use our collections development policy to help guide our decisions on how to responsibly care for and manage our collections. You can find out more about our collections here . If you would like to donate an object, please complete this form and one of the team will be in touch.

Collections Information Policy
The information policy sets out how we record and store information about the collection.

Collections Care and Conservation Policy
The care and conservation policy sets out what risks the collections face and how we try to limit potential damage.

Collections Access Policy
The access policy is there to help us to reduce barriers preventing people finding out more about the collection.

We have policies for:

We are committed to making our collections widely available and welcome requests to lend objects from our collection to other organisations and institutions which share the museum's values and aims. Please see our Loans Policy for further details.

Human remains
Our Care and Treatment of Human Remains policy sets out how we care for and use human remains. 

Indigenous Engagement

Our Indigenous Engagement policy sets out considerations for working with Indigenous collections and source communities.


Exhibitions take place in the Art Gallery and the Walkway. We use our exhibitions strategy to help decide what exhibitions to put on. If you have an idea for an exhibition, please complete the expression of interest form at the end of the strategy.


The first-floor walkway is available to hire for exhibitions. If would like to know more about hiring the Walkway, please get in touch .


We aim to make our events and activities accessible for as many people as possible. If you have any ideas or suggestions for future events or activities, please get in touch.

Fees and Charges

Fees and charges for venue hire, learning and collections resources and staff time can be found in our Fees and Charges 2020-21 document.


We aim to inspire creativity and life-long learning through the innovative use of collections to create fun and thought provoking formal and informal learning opportunities. Our approach to learning is underpinned by our learning strategy.

Current Projects

Our projects are designed to deal with areas we think need special attention.

Curating for change (2020-)

Curating for Change is a development programme to tackle the under-representation of D/deaf and disabled people working in museums. It is a partnership of 18 museums led by Accentuate and funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

COVID-19 Journaling Project (2020)

The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic changed everyone's lives and will have a lasting impact on our community. We aim to capture a range of perspectives that will help future generations and researchers understand what this period was like for local people.

What's in the Box? (2020-) 

This is a collections based community engagement project with East Sussex home education, LGBTQ+ and refugee community groups. This project is funded through an Arts Council National Lottery Project grant.

The Hastings Brexit Archive (2020-)

The Archive aims to record the views of local people on Brexit from the referendum in 2016 to current events. The project will collect stories today and preserve them for the future. Once complete the Archive will give a snapshot of local people's thoughts on Brexit for curators in the future to use.

Museums Futures (2019-)

Museums Futures is a partnership of museums across the UK working together to support new entrants into the museum sector with an interest in gaining digital skills. This programme is coordinated by the British Museum and funded through the National Lottery Heritage Fund's Skills for the Future funding.

Museum & Schools (2018-)

Funded by Arts Council England and the Department of Education, the Museums and Schools project   aims to increase the number of schools visiting the museum. This project is a partnership between Hastings and Bexhill Museums.

As part of the Museum and Schools project, Hastings Museum and Art Gallery teamed up with local arts and theatre company, Dens and Signals, to trial a successful project supporting Year 6 pupils moving onto secondary school. This project, Transformations, used the museum, it’s grounds and collection to talk about friendship, resilience and dealing with change.

Heritage Schools (2018-)

This is an on-going piece of work with Historic England and local schools.

Hastings Pier Archive (2018-)

Hastings Pier heritage assets were transferred to council ownership in 2018. Since then the museum has been exploring ways of maintaining the Pier Archive website for the benefit of future generations.  

Previous Projects

Hastings Digital Museum (2020)

Hastings digital museum was set up to reduce social isolation and loneliness exacerbated by lockdown. Over 24 weeks we produced projects for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get people involved and working together.

Building Digital Capacity Strategic Mentoring Programme (2020)

The museum is part of The Space's new Strategic Mentoring Programme. This programme includes tailored resources to help address digital challenges, test new ideas, and think more strategically about how we use digital technologies.

Beyond the Spectacle: Native North American Presence in Britain (2019-2020)

This Arts & Humanities Research Council funded project examines the way Native American visitors to Britain interact with Native American collections here. The museum is working with the project team to develop guidelines to enable visits by Indigenous people to Bristish museums.

LGBTQ+ A Hop, Skip and a Jump... (2019-20)

We are working with East Sussex County Council, Charleston Farmhouse, De La Warr Pavilion, Towner Gallery and local young people to explore the hidden histories of LGBTQI+ people and communities in East Sussex over the past 100 years. Makwe your own 'zine' inspired by this project. You can download a copy of the resource as a PDF here.

Exploring Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) Project (2017-18)

Finding our place: A Future for Hastings Museum (2016-18)

Hastings Remembers... A Five-Year Programme of First World War Centenary Activities (2014-18)

Our Approach To

The Climate Emergency - we have made changes to our working practices. We are also working with local young people to respond in creative and practical ways.  

Fees & charges - our fees and charges are agreed each year by Hastings Borough Council. The current fees are here.

Fair pay - we are committed to fairly paying people who work in arts. Our fees for artists, creatives and specialists for projects are in line with guidelines set by the relevant lead bodies.

Working with partners – we believe working in partnerships helps us do our job better. We decide on who to work with based on what the aims of the project or work are.

Shop stock – we like to stock a range of merchandise in the shop. We cater for all budgets from pocket money buys through to one-off bespoke artisan commissions. If you have any ideas or suggestions for new stock, then please get in touch .

Volunteering – you can find out what volunteering opportunities we currently have here . We encourage volunteer involvement in our work and hope that volunteers will both enjoy and benefit from their experiences. Our Volunteer Policy sets out our approach to volunteering.

Working with indigenous communities - our Indigenous Engagement Policy sets our our approach to working with Indigenous communities. It has been created in partnership with the Beyond the Spectacle Project and Indigenous people.

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