Our Museums

Loans, Donations & Repatriation

National Museums NI is a leading cultural institution responsible for ensuring that Northern Ireland’s significant collection is developed, cared for, and accessible.

Contact our Registrar
A car press from the Folk Life collection

We actively encourage loans to promote access, disseminate information and to connect the widest possible audience with our collections.

We view loans as a collaborative partnership that enables us to maximise access to our collections and will lend locally, nationally and internationally to borrowers that can meet our loan conditions.

National Museums NI’s policy on lending can be found in the Collections Information and Access Policy and the Lending and Borrowing Policy.

In addition the Guide to borrowing from National Museums NI and Loan Charges Schedule (applicable from 1 April 2020) may assist in planning your loan request.



Repatriation and Restitution Proposals

National Museums NI welcomes enquiries about the repatriation or restitution of material in the World Cultures collections. All enquiries should be addressed to: Anne Orr, Registrar National Museums NI. Contact Anne via email or telephone.  

Please provide accession numbers (if known), information about the objects covered by the enquiry, and background as to why a return to the community of origin is being sought

Our Registrar will acknowledge receipt of the enquiry and schedule a meeting where the enquiry will be discussed in more detail. Following this meeting, and a period of further discussion and information gathering and sharing, a formal repatriation proposal may then be made to the Chief Executive Officer of National Museums NI. Our Registrar will discuss what information is required for the formal request. The Chief Executive Officer will acknowledge receipt of the formal proposal and provide an indicative timeline for the decision making process. The proposal will then be presented to National Museums NI’s Board of Trustees for their consideration, the outcome of which will be communicated to the interested parties in a timely manner.