At the New Year, it's customary to look back at the previous year.  In the spring, I went to Croatia and Slovenia to run workshops about visitor studies and how cultural heritage organisations can improve their offer for visitors.  I've copy-edited the English text for the new exhibition on the development of trade and shops for the Hungarian Trade and Tourism Museum; it's always a challenge to explain things which aren't familiar to foreign visitors.  For instance - Norinberg Goods: a well-known phrase for Hungarians, which refers to brushes and small toiletry articles which were made in Nuremberg, see here.  In the autumn I went to a conference in Oslo about the impact of World Heritage Sites on local communities, and it was surprising to see how little consideration, in general, is taken of local people's views when a place becomes a World Heritage Site.  Clearly a need for more visitor and non-visitor studies!

Back at the desk, the evaluation of English Heritage's Heritage Schools project continues, in collaboration with Qa Research.  I'm carrying some of the qualitative evaluations in schools, so I've been able to visit Great Yarmouth, Bristol, Manchester, Dagenham, Leicester and a couple of schools in North Tyneside. In Leicester, there was time to visit the Richard III exhibition, about finding his skeleton in the car park.  It was interesting to see the range of scientific disciplines used to identify and interpret the body, including the scanned and 3D-printed skull.

Looking at the museum and cultural heritage sector as a whole, museums and heritage sites are facing further cuts in staff and budgets, and they need to continue to show their worth (not just in monetary terms) to maintain their profile.  The new National Curriculum will be taught from September 2014, and there is a requirement for local studies in History at Key Stages 1, 2 and 3 which will help with visits to museums and heritage sites.