On Sunday 25th November, for the second consecutive year, over 100 shops in museums, galleries and other cultural attractions in the UK and in ten countries globally, will be joining in this special event. The now annual Museum Shop Sunday offers unique gift inspiration, kick-starts the festive season, and showcases the great products that can be found all year long.
Read on for our list of 7 reasons museum shops deserve your support, and the exciting events Royal Museums Greenwich Shop has planned.
Can’t make it in person? Shop.rmg.co.uk is offering free delivery over the weekend, from Friday 23rd until midnight on Sunday 25th.
Use code: 25NOV
1. They find like-minded products made by independent makers. Museum shops will seek out independent brands that create great products aligned with our heritage. This Museum Shop Sunday we’ve invited Isle of Wight Distillery to cross the Solent and showcase their craft spirits inspired by the sea - Mermaid Gin and Rock Sea Vodka - with expert pairings of botanicals and mixers. Using local and sustainable ingredients, their small batch, slow distillation creates an expression of the beautiful island off the South Coast of England.
Find us: National Maritime Museum Stanhope Shop, from midday.
2. They work with expert crafts-people to create unique designs. Museum retail teams love working together with master crafts-people to create products that will enrich visitor experience and give them a lasting memento of their day. These sail cloth bags were brought into being when, as part of the museum’s collection deaccession process, we had sails that no longer could be housed, so a bag maker was found in Topsham, Devon, that could upcycle them. Each bag is unique and shows characteristics of its former life.
Find us: National Maritime Museum Stanhope Shop or online
3. They help sustain the future of the museum. Museum shops re-invest their profits to support the work of the museum, and it goes towards preserving the collections for future generations. No matter how small or big your purchase, consider looking to see if what you need could be bought from a museum shop first, and help to sustain the museum’s service to the public.
4. They value your support. As a thank you for choosing to shop at museums, many will be offering deals and discounts on the day that would be unavailable any other time of the year. On board the Cutty Sark, hampers full of delicious cargo mean savings of up to £6.00.
Find us: Cutty Sark Shop. Save £5 when you buy the 2 Cutty Sark teas online (discount available Friday 23rd – Sunday 25th November).
5. They share their product knowledge to help. Museum shop staff are trained to answer your questions and help you find what you need. Our knowledgeable shop staff at the Royal Observatory will talk you through our range of industry-approved telescopes suitable for all ages, to help you discover the magic of the night sky. Or if you’ve ever wondered what an Astrolabe does, now is a good time to ask!
Find us: Royal Observatory shops, throughout the day
6. You have the chance to win fantastic prizes. Many museums will run competitions to have the chance to win some of the lovely items we have for sale, to treat yourself or to strike one more present off your gift list. At the National Maritime Museum there will be the chance to enter a competition to win a bottle of HMS Victory rum from the Isle of Wight Distillery, and at the Royal Observatory enter to win jewellery containing carborundum, which has similar properties to diamond, and naturally occurs in meteorites.
Find us: National Maritime Museum Shops and Royal Observatory Meridian Shop, throughout the day. Terms and conditions apply.
7. The products you buy help the museum, but also others. Find Christmas decorations that will look good and do good. Many museum retail teams use their purchasing power to support companies that operate ethically and fairly. These embroidered Tudor Christmas decorations are hand made by skilled artisans employed by the St Nicholas foundation; they support rural women in Thailand and India to find work in their local community.
What’s more, you can purchase the set for the special price of £24 (usually £36) and would add a touch of royal splendour to any tree or make great individual gifts.
Find us: Queen’s House Shop and online (discount available Friday 23rd – Sunday 25th November).
A full list of all non-profit cultural venues taking part in the UK can be found here.
Follow Royal Museums Greenwich and Museum Shop Sunday on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest news and events in your area, and be sure to tag your experiences #MuseumShopSunday.