Our collection contains many objects kindly donated by members of the public and we are always happy to discuss new possible donations to the museum. These generous gifts enable us to enrich and grow our historic collections and to tell more fascinating Swansea stories for you to enjoy.
Where do I start?
If you have an item you think we would be interested in, please email us and tell us about it on Swansea.Museum@swansea.gov.uk
Tell us as much as you can about the item, e.g. how it came into your possession or where you found it; what its story is and what are its connections to Swansea.
If you can attach a picture of it, with something in the picture for scale that would really help.
Please note we do not give valuations of objects.
What happens next?
As a team, we will look at the information you have sent us and then assess whether your item might be something that we would be interested in acquiring for the collections.
We may ask you to bring the object in for us to see, if you are able. Please wait for us to contact you with an appointment to come in. That way we can make sure there is someone here to talk to you and you will not have a wasted journey.
Please do not send objects through the post or leave them at the museum anonymously.
We are unable to collect everything that is offered to us. Our museum’s Collections Policy guides us in what we can and cannot accept. The most important thing we look for is whether the item has a strong connection to Swansea and its district or whether it tells a strong Swansea story. If it is something we would like to take into the collections we will let you know and arrange to meet you to take in the item.
Sometimes we may ask if you are willing to donate your object into our Education/Handling collections. Our Education/Handling collections are used with school groups, for reminiscence sessions and for public engagement sessions. They are an essential part of bringing history to life and will be enjoyed by many people. However, wear and tear may eventually damage them and they may no longer be used.
If we do not accept your object
It may be that for a variety of reasons we cannot accept your offer. Please do not be offended. Our staff will be able to advise you if there are other museums who might be interested in your object and we are always very grateful that you considered donating to the museum.
When will it go on display?
It is unlikely that your item will be put on display straight away, although we do like to highlight new acquisitions to the collection as often as we can. The museum cares for thousands of objects, and displays are planned many years in advance. Your object will be carefully looked after, documented and stored. It will be made available for researchers to study, for educational purposes and may be included in future displays when appropriate. You are most welcome to come and view it at any time by appointment.
Can I leave items to the museum in my will?
Yes. Please send us details of the offer and we will consider it and let you know whether the museum will be able to accept it, in line with our current Collecting Policy. Unfortunately, we are not able to guarantee that when the time comes circumstances have not changed, for example the museum may have acquired similar items in the meantime and as such we may no longer be in a position to accept your bequest.