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  • Annual Report and Accounts 2018–19

    Science Museum, London

    Science and Industry Museum, Manchester

    National Railway Museum, York

    Locomotion, Shildon

    National Science and Media Museum, Bradford

    National Collections Centre, Wroughton

    SCMG Enterprises Ltd

    HC 2374

  • Science Museum Group

    Annual Report and Accounts 2018–19

    Presented to Parliament pursuant to Section 9 (8) of the Museums and Galleries Act 1992

    Ordered by the House of Commons to be printed 10 July 2019

    HC 2374

  • © Crown copyright 2019

    This publication is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence v3.0 except where otherwise stated. To view this licence, visit

    Where we have identified any third party copyright information you will need to obtain permission from the copyright holders concerned.

    This publication is available at

    Any enquiries regarding this publication should be sent to us at Science Museum, Exhibition Road, London, SW7 2DD

    ISBN 978-1-5286-1176-3 CCS0319929984 07/19

    Printed on paper containing 75% recycled fibre content minimum

    Printed in the UK by the APS Group on behalf of the Controller of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office

  • Science Museum Group Annual Report and Accounts 2018-19





    Grow ‘science capital’ in individuals and society 8 Grow our audiences and exceed their expectations 10 Sustain and grow our world-class collection 15 Extend our international reach 17 Transform our estate 20 Harness the potential of digital 22 Increase income 24 Enabling activities 26 Financing and fundraising 28 Performance 30








  • Science Museum Group Annual Report and Accounts 2018-19


  • Science Museum Group Annual Report and Accounts 2018-19


    1. Science Museum Group Purpose and objectives The Science Museum Group is devoted to the history and contemporary practice of science, medicine, technology, industry and media. Its collections form an enduring record of scientific, technological and medical change since the 18th century. They are the largest, most comprehensive and most significant in their field anywhere in the world. The Group incorporates the Science Museum, the Science Museum Library and the Wellcome Collections of the History of Medicine in South Kensington; the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester; the National Railway Museum in York and Locomotion in Shildon; and the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford. Collections stores are located at Wroughton, Wiltshire and Blythe House in West Kensington, London.

    As defined in the 1983 National Heritage Act, the Science Museum Group’s charitable objectives are to:

    • Care for, preserve and add to the objects in its collections,

    • Secure that the objects are exhibited to the public, • Secure that the objects are available to persons seeking

    to inspect them in connection with study or research, and • Generally promote the public’s enjoyment and

    understanding of science and technology and of the development of those subjects, both by means of the Board’s collections and by such other means as they consider appropriate.

    The vision and mission for the Group, as agreed by the Board of Trustees of the Science Museum in December 2016 are set out in section 2 below. These take due regard of the Charity Commission’s general guidance on public benefit and inform all decision-making, future planning and strategic priorities.

    History and organisation The Science Museum has its origins in the South Kensington Museum set up soon after the Great Exhibition of 1851. The South Kensington Museum was reorganised as the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Science Museum in 1909. The Science Museum expanded outside London and the National Railway Museum, which opened in 1975, was established as a result of the transfer of the British Transport Commission’s railway collection to the Board of Trustees of the Science Museum. The National Railway Museum at Shildon was opened in 2004 in partnership with Sedgefield Borough Council. On 1 December 2017 the operational responsibility for the

    museum transferred fully to the Science Museum Group. The National Science and Media Museum was established in 1983 as the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television, with the support of Bradford City Council. The National Collections Centre at Wroughton, a former Second World War airfield, was made available to the Science Museum by the Ministry of Defence in 1979. The Science and Industry Museum, formerly the Museum of Science and Industry, opened in 1969 as the North Western Museum of Science and was registered as a charity in 1987; it joined the Science Museum Group in 2012.

    Legal status and Group structure The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum is the corporate body of the Science Museum Group and was established under the National Heritage Act 1983. Until 1984, the Group was managed directly by Government, when it ceased to operate as part of a Government department. It now has the status of a non-departmental public body (NDPB), operating within the public sector but at arm’s length from its sponsor department, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS). These accounts fulfil the requirements of the 1983 Act

    and the Museums and Galleries Act 1992. The Science Museum Group is an exempt charity under Schedule 3 of the Charities Act 2011, with DCMS acting as its principal regulator for charity law purposes, and is recognised as charitable by HM Revenue & Customs.

    The Group has a wholly owned subsidiary trading company, SCMG Enterprises Ltd (company registration no. 02196149), set up in 1988 and operating across all the Group’s museums.

  • Science Museum Group Annual Report and Accounts 2018-19


    Museum addresses

    Science Museum Exhibition Road London SW7 2DD

    National Railway Museum Leeman Road York YO26 4XJ

    National Science and Media Museum Pictureville Bradford BD1 1NQ

    Science and Industry Museum Liverpool Road Castlefield Manchester M4 3FP

    Locomotion Shildon County Durham DL4 1PQ

    Company addresses

    Entity Registered number

    Registered office

    SCMG Enterprises Ltd 02196149 Science Museum Exhibition Road London SW7 2DD

    List of Science Museum Group advisers

    Science Museum Group SCMG Enterprises Ltd

    Auditors Comptroller and Auditor General National Audit Office 157–197 Buckingham Palace Road London SW1W 9SP

    PKF Littlejohn 1 Westferry Circus Canary Wharf London E14 4HD

    Bankers Barclays Bank plc Floor 27 1 Churchill Place London E14 5HP

    Barclays Bank plc Floor 27 1 Churchill Place London E14 5HP

    Solicitors The Group draws advice from a range of solicitors by sector, which this year included:

    Bates Wells Braithwaite CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Farrer & Co. Fladgate LLP Hansel Henson Knights plc Kuits Mills & Reeve LLP VWV

    The Group also has access to other legal firms on the London Universities Purchasing Consortium panel.

  • Science Museum Group Annual Report and Accounts 2018-19


    2. Achievements and Performance Science Museum Group strategic objectives Each Science Museum Group museum has its own distinct identity and remit, but the Group also recognises the opportunities it has as a group and its capacity to be greater than the sum of its parts. The Science Museum Group has a Group-wide vision and mission, together with seven Group-wide strategic priorities, which provide the framework for activity across the Group up to 2030.

    Group vision:

    A society that celebrates science, technology and engineering and their impact on our lives, now and in the future.

    Group mission:

    We inspire futures by:

    · Creative exploration of science, technical innovation and industry, and how they made and sustain modern society.

    • Building a scientifically literate society, using the history, present and future of science, technology, medicine, transport and media to grow science capital.

    • Inspiring the next generations of scientists, inventors and engineers.

    Focus of each museum:

    • The Science Museum explores the science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine that shape our lives.

    • The Science and Industry Museum explores how ideas can change the world, from the Industrial Revolution to today.

    • The National Railway Museum explores the huge impact of railways on Britain and the wider world.

    • The National Science and Media Museum explores the transformative impact of image and sound technologies on our lives.

    Strategic priorities

    Seven key priorities drive Science Museum Group activity:

    Core priorities 1. Grow ‘science capital’ i

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