Space for Learning

Sheds at the Manchester Museum used as the schools' cloakroom

Adapting – your processes

Arrival on site

England: NHS Test and trace

Venues in hospitality, the tourism and leisure industry, close contact services and local authority facilities must collect details and maintain records of staff, customers and visitors on your premises to support NHS Test and Trace. The Government has provided guidance on the information to collect and how to store and dispose of it: Maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace  

Providers of out-of-school activities should keep a written or electronic list of the children in each group they work with for at least 21 days for Test and Trace purposes.

Scotland: Test and Protect

Scotland’s NHS tracking and testing programme – data will need to be collected as part of ticketing and visiting and held for 21 days.

Wales: Test, trace, protect

Certain businesses are expected to collect and retain information about who has been on the premises, and when, for 21 days. Museums, heritage and performing arts sites are not specifically mentioned, however the guidance highlights settings where ‘staff, customers and visitors will spend a longer time on these premises than in other surroundings and potentially come into close contact with people outside of their household’ as needing to collect details.

Booked visits

Many sites are asking visitors to pre-book their visit, to allow them to manage numbers of visitors in their spaces. The pre-booking process can also be used to help manage your test and trace records.

  • Art Fund’s Art Tickets is a ticket management system for selling tickets online designed exclusively for museums and galleries. It is free to use.
  • Some venues, such as the National Trust, are using Eventbrite for booking visits. It is free to use if your tickets are free. There is a charge if you are selling tickets.
  • Tiqets is another online ticketing system.

Creating a welcome video

Some sites have created a welcome video to help visitors understand what to expect when they arrive at a venue, including information about access and toilets.

At Leeds Museums and Galleries they created a powerpoint that they turned into an animation.

Opening hours

To facilitate visitors’ social distancing and prevent them from waiting in large groups, some sites are offering pre-opening-hour arrival options for designated groups – for example pre-booked organised groups of adults, school groups and holiday clubs. Groups can then arrive individually and use the facilities, such as toilets, and move through spaces before public opening hours.

Meeting visitors’ access needs while being Covid Secure

Situations may arise when museum staff would previously have offered support that requires physically touching visitors – for example, sighted guiding for a visitor with visual impairment. You should have discussed these needs with your front of house and learning team in advance of re-opening and decided on your organisation’s approach.

Inclusive principles

We Shall Not Be Removed has worked in partnership with Ramps on the Moon, Attitude is Everything,Paraorchestra, and What Next? to create a new guide for the arts and entertainment sectors to support disability inclusion. The Seven Inclusive Principles for Arts & Cultural Organisations working safely through COVID-19 is designed to complement the suite of guidance documents already issued by UK Governments and sector support organisations. Section five in the guidance looks at mapping the visitor journey and includes resources to help organisations reconsider their existing practice.

Turnaround time and cleaning

When in use you will need to consider the required turnaround time for your learning spaces, including cleaning of fixtures, fittings and furniture. Alternatively you may choose to quarantine spaces for 72 hours between uses.

Ask yourself:

  • Who will be responsible for doing this cleaning? 
  • How will you ensure they are kept safe whilst doing so?
  • How long will it take them and what will they require to get the job done?

Guidance for England on Cleaning in non-healthcare settings outside the home.

Some venues are using fogging machines in spaces without collections or precious objects that could be damaged by the cleaning mist. For example the Victoria & Albert Museum have bought a handheld Vector Fog machine to use in back of house offices.