We award the prize annually to one museum, gallery, historic home or heritage site in the UK that goes the extra mile to provide a great experience for families. It is the only museum award to be judged by families.

This year’s award has been the biggest yet, with a record-breaking number of nominations from families. We received over 860 online nominations for more than 80 different UK museums. Thank you to all those who submitted a family nomination or a museum application.

Over the last couple of weeks, two shortlisting panels have whittled down these nominations to 15 outstanding museums going the extra mile to welcome children, young people and families.

The shortlist for the Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum Award 2019 is:

Large Museum Category

  • Museum of Liverpool
  • Riverside Museum, Glasgow
  • World Museum, Liverpool

Medium Museum Category

  • Bolton Museum & Art Gallery
  • Great North Museum: Hancock
  • London Transport Museum
  • The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent
  • Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, Cambridge
  • University Museum of Zoology, Cambridge

Small Museum Category

  • Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum, Dunfermline
  • The Devil’s Porridge Museum, Eastriggs
  • Erewash Museum, Derbyshire
  • Hastings Museum & Art Gallery
  • Parc Howard Museum, Llanelli
  • Valence House Museum, Dagenham

Damian Dibben, bestselling children’s author and Kids in Museums Ambassador, said: “Since we began the award in 2004, we’ve seen a real sea-change in how museums cater for their family audiences. Each year the shortlisting gets more and more difficult and this year has been our most competitive yet! These museums have been shortlisted because they go above and beyond to put families first and make them feel welcome throughout their visit. We congratulate all our shortlisted museums. It’s now over to families to help us decide the winner.”

What next?

Over the summer holiday, undercover family judges will visit each shortlisted museum and judge them on how well they meet our Kids in Museums Manifesto. If you are interested in becoming a family judge, you can find more information and sign up here.

Their experiences will decide a winner for each award category and an overall winner, our Family Friendly Museum of the Year 2019. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in London in October.

In the meantime, you can follow the Family Friendly Museum Award on social media by following @kidsinmuseums and #FamilyFriendlyMuseum.

The Family Friendly Museum Award has been made possible by funding from Arts Council England and is kindly supported by Edwardian Hotels London.