Leeds Thackray Museum of Medicine up for top Art Fund museum of the year award

A Leeds museum has been shortlisted for the 2021 museum of the year award.
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It is part of the five-strong shortlist for Art Fund’s annual prize.

The Thackray Museum of Medicine in Harehills is up for the top spot, along with the the Experience Barnsley.

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Outside of Yorkshire, the shortlist includes the Timespan in Helmsdale, Scotland, the Centre for Contemporary Art in Londonderry, and Firstsite in Colchester.

The Thackray Museum of Medicine is up for the museum of the year award.The Thackray Museum of Medicine is up for the museum of the year award.
The Thackray Museum of Medicine is up for the museum of the year award.

Organisers said the nominees reflect the “extraordinary and innovative ways” museums have coped amid the pandemic.

Art Fund director Jenny Waldman said: “Art Fund Museum of the Year 2021 attracted a flood of applications and it has been incredible to see what museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK have achieved, overcoming the challenges of the past year.

“Their resilience is nothing short of heroic. Our five finalists are all deeply embedded in their communities and alive to the possibilities of reaching far beyond their locality digitally.

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“They have each shown extraordinary innovation and resolve. I would encourage everyone to visit them if they possibly can – in person or online – or make a beeline to a museum close to you this summer.”

The winning museum will be announced at a ceremony in September and will receive £100,000.

The other nominees will each be given £15,000.

Last year’s award was shared between its five nominees due to the “unprecedented challenges” of the pandemic.

The Thackray Museum of Medicine in Beckett Street is a museum about the history of medicine.

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Last year the the former workhouse and infirmary served as a vaccination centre.

It administered more than 50,000 Covid vaccinations to NHS and care staff from council staff, district nurses to mental health workers as well as Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust workers - which was around 16,000 people.