York Museums Trust

Community Participation

At York Museums Trust we are aware that there are barriers to connecting to our collections. Our work with communities is a step on the way to address these obstacles and help us inspire, share and care for our shared cultural heritage.  

We believe that community partnerships are essential to our work and will contribute and help individuals to explore their self-expression, make availablopportunities for their personal development and help to steer the work of York Museums Trust. 

York Museums Trust is working to make our community partnerships more equal and available to a wide range of people. If you would like to work with us, look at our currenprojects below or contact our Communities Engagement Researcher Philip Newton (philip.newton@ymt.org.uk) 

Recent projects

Heritage Hunters

York is famous for Romans, Viking, Medieval architecture, Georgian streets, and Victorian industries but parts of the city have been overlooked in its narrative. Heritage Hunters aims to work with residents in areas of York that have a wealth of history but has not yet had the focus. The project is not about uncovering new histories but to support those who live there to find out more about their surroundings and to share it with their friends and neighbours. We also bring organisations and charities together to support residents and build further connections with the past and share the researcher.


Our first project brought together people living in the area of Hull Road in 2022. This was our pilot and was funded by the City of York Council and Make it York. You can see our first magazine below.

Our second and most recent project was Heritage Hunters: The Groves, which brought together residents, artists, organisations, and further education providers to investigate the past of The Groves area of the City of York. Articles range from lost novelists, memories of growing up in the area, the development of the Groves and house history. York St John animation students also created short films from stories collected by We Are The Groves while. York Explore libraries and Archives supported the group throughout and their collections and knowledge have been vital to our work.


Hull Road (pdf) Issue 1 – Heritage Hunters. Hull Road .pdf

The Groves (pdf) –  Groves Heritage Hunters Magazine.pdf

Groves Animation

Acomb and Westfield (pdf) – Acomb and Westfield Leaflet.pdf


A Takeover is when York Museums Trust invites a community, we are working with, to take over jobs normally done by staff. This allows our us to see a new way of doing things by bringing in new voices, new experiences and giving up some control over our public platforms. 

How can you be involved?  

We are experimenting with ways our communities can take over while we are at reduced opening so for now this will be limited to our digital platforms. However, once restrictions have been lifted and the Trust is at pre-Covid-19 capacity, takeovers will include physical interventions in the museum. For now, here are some options for you to choose from.  


  • Put together a series of posts on social media of objects from our collection that you connect with  
  • Tell us about a specific history, ancient or recent, from your community   
  • Short interviews/videos of people from your community discussing their histories  
  • An online tour of one of our exhibitions  
  • Share something surprising from behind-the-scenes.  
  • Write a blog  
  • Curate an online exhibition   
  • Online quiz/crafts/skills sharing   
  • Share information about your campaigns and priorities    

And of course, you can suggest other ways to takeover! 

If you want to know more, Communities Engagement Researcher Philip Newton (philip.newton@ymt.org.uk) 


Our current partners 

York Travellers Trust  

York City of Sanctuary  

York LGBT Forum and York Pride 

York LGBT History Month  

Welcome to York Programme  

The Good Organisation  

York Human Rights City  

York Local Area Coordinators  

Kyra Womens Project  

Refugee Action York