Jill Iredale, from Bradford Council’s Museums and Galleries Service, has received a nomination for the National Museums Change Lives Award 2023.

Recently, the judges convened and Jill has been selected as a finalist for the Radical Changemaker Award 2023. This recognition is a testament to her efforts in the Bradford district, where she has been instrumental in involving and empowering local community groups to share their stories and experiences within museum venues under Bradford Council’s administration.

This award honours individuals who have brought about significant transformation in the UK museum sector. It celebrates exemplary practices exhibited by UK museums that make a social impact, showcasing the finest instances of work by museums and individuals who support communities and engage with contemporary issues.

The nomination said: “Jill is delivering powerful, impactful and collaborative social projects in her new role as a community curator for Bradford Museums and Galleries. One recent collaboration is Don’t Give Up – a fully co-curated exhibition with Windrush Generations. The project engaged young people from the Caribbean community to spend time with and talk to the first-generation elders who settled in Bradford.

“It resulted in a powerful and personal exhibition at Cartwright Hall Art Gallery in Manningham, where many of the community settled and still live. Elders shared their histories, many for the first time, and over 20,000 people visited the exhibition.

“This entirely collaborative way of working has informed the other projects Jill is working on, including the co-development of a new gallery space designed to support young people with their mental health. Jill is also working with groups of refugees and asylum seekers, who are supported by the Anchor project, to develop long-term and trusting relationships. There is no planned outcome or agenda, and Jill’s whole practice is one where the community leads the way.”

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Healthy People and Places, said: “This is such a well-deserved shortlisting for Jill and I wish her every success at the awards ceremony. The work she’s doing in collaboration with people from the local community has proved really popular with visitors to our museums.”

The Awards Ceremony is scheduled for 7th November, forming part of the Museum Association’s Annual Conference in Newcastle-Gateshead.