Scottish National Portrait Gallery

In April 2009, the Scottish National Portrait Gallery (SNPG) closed for a major refurbishment and redevelopment project. The redevelopment project, entitled Portrait of the Nation, cost £17.9 million, funded through support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Scottish Government, grant giving trusts and donations from individuals.  Completed in December 2011, the Portrait of a Nation project resulted in the refurbishment of the existing galleries and creation of new gallery spaces, new visitor facilities, and new opportunities for learning and outreach with a range of audiences.


National Galleries of Scotland commissioned Jura Consultants to conduct an evaluation of the project, one year following the reopening of the gallery. The aim of the evaluation project was to consider the impact of the redevelopment project following its first year in terms of the visitor experience and the gallery operations. The evaluation was carried out through a series of engagement with staff, stakeholders and SNPH visitors. We gathered feedback from a number of perspectives including visitors that engaged with the SNPG before its redevelopment, new visitors to the Gallery, participants in activities and events programmes, general public that have not yet visited the Gallery, staff members and stakeholders. The outcome of the evaluation was a report that was designed to fulfil a number of needs, including supporting the further development of the SNPG and reporting the outcomes to the Scottish Government, Heritage Lottery Fund, donors and other stakeholders



Historic Scotland

Historic Scotland is Scotland’s lead agency for the historic environment. Created through the redevelopment of a landmark disused historic building in Stirling, the Engine Shed will be a world-leading centre for technical building conservation. The purpose of the Engine Shed is to raise standards for traditional buildings, broaden awareness of the importance of traditional materials and skills and develop those skills to ensure a sustainable future for Scotland’s historic environment. It will be a unique national and international hub for technical conservation providing training and engagement opportunities on-site and also working in collaboration with and signposting the work of partners across the conservation sector. The Engine Shed will target a range of audiences from the general public to professionals within the sector in its attempts to raise awareness and standards across the industry.

Jura Consultants was commissioned to assist Historic Scotland in the development of an Activity Plan and Business Plan for a Round 2 submission to the Heritage Lottery Fund. A key element of this commission was working with Historic Scotland to deliver an extensive programme of consultation with internal and external stakeholder groups and the general public conducted through a combination of presentations, focus groups, workshops and surveys. This process not only informed audiences about the project but also enabled Historic Scotland and the project team to engage in a dialogue with the target audiences ensuring their views, needs and requirements were reflected in the ultimate scope, nature and activities of the Engine Shed. In November 2014 Historic Scotland was awarded £3.8 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund towards the £8.9 million project. The Engine Shed officially opened to the public in June 2017.



University of Edinburgh

St Cecilia’s Hall Museum of Instruments is home to the world famous collections of early keyboard and plucked strings, part of Edinburgh University Collection of Historic Musical Instruments (EUCHMI). It is the oldest purpose-built concert hall in Scotland, and the second oldest in the Britain. At the heart of this Georgian building is its concert room, surrounded by three galleries which house one of the world's most important collections of musical heritage, with many of its instruments still playable in a concert setting.

The University of Edinburgh aimed to redevelop the museum to establish a bespoke home for the University’s Collection of musical instruments. As part of a funding application to the Heritage Lottery Fund, Jura Consultants was commissioned by the University of Edinburgh to assist with both the Round 1 and Round 2 HLF applications. Our involvement included Activity Plan and Business Plan development informed by an in-depth programme of audience research and analysis. The latter included a series of focus group research with current users of St Cecilia’s Hall, a survey with the general public including non-visitors, interviews with exhibition visitors and interviews with key staff and stakeholders. Having attained a Round 1 HLF pass and development grant of £76,500 in December 2012, the project secured a grant award of £823,500 March 2014.



English Heritage

The NHPP was designed by English Heritage to be a framework which brings the heritage sector together at a time of constrained resources to work towards shared goals. The current plan expires in March 2015 and English Heritage is currently developing the plan for the next period. To aid the development of the next iteration of the plan, English Heritage commissioned Jura Consultants to manage a comprehensive programme of consultation with the sector. This included developing workshop tools to be used at 13 workshops in 9 locations in England, developing and analysing an online survey and conducting one-to-one interviews with sector representatives. The findings from this process have been used to inform the development of the next plan.



Culture Coventry

Coventry Transport Museum received an HLF grant of £4.6 million to help refresh, rationalise and modernise the Coventry Transport Museum’s galleries, creating a world class visitor experience. In addition, the adjacent Old Grammar School will be sympathetically conserved and brought back into use as an exhibition, event and education space. As part of the project a number of existing galleries will be reconceptualised and enhanced and new galleries added. As part of the Activity Plan implementation, Jura Consultants was commissioned to assist the museum with further audience engagement to gather additional visitor input into gallery development ideas and test the current interpretive proposals. This involved discussions with the interpretive designers, a document review and research including an on-street survey, in-gallery interviews and activity workshops with target developmental audiences. A total of 311 people, reflecting each of these audiences, were consulted.



North Berwick Arts Centre Steering Group

With an abundance of local arts groups and galleries and its annual Fringe By the Sea festival, offshoot of the Edinburgh International and Fringe Festival, North Berwick has a flourishing and vibrant arts community. Despite this however, there is currently no dedicated arts venue within the town meaning its local residents must travel 20 miles to Musselburgh in order to access a dedicated arts facility. This also impacts upon the quality and extent of arts-based activity that can be offered for visitors during the Fringe by the Sea and year round.


Responding to this, it is the vision of the North Berwick Arts Centre Steering Group (NBACSG) to create an inspiring and exciting purpose built Arts Centre in North Berwick offering a vibrant hub of performance creativity and learning that will appeal to locals and visitors alike. The Steering Group commissioned Jura Consultants to perform a feasibility study exploring the viability of creating an Arts Centre in North Berwick. The study was underpinned by a process including audience consultation (survey and focus group) to explore demand for the Centre, comparator analysis to identify the current benchmark at other arts centres across Scotland, and a market appraisal ascertaining the market potential with respect to target audience segments.  The results of the consultation, comparator analysis and market appraisal were triangulated to identify anticipated visit numbers, optimum capacity and performance programme at a North Berwick Arts Centre from which a preferred arts centre model was identified and subjected to feasibility testing. The report concluded with an action plan setting out the way forward for the Steering Group based on the findings of the feasibility study.



National Galleries of Scotland, Glasgow Life and University of Glasgow

In June 2014, Jura Consultants was commissioned to prepare a Strategic Framework for major capital projects in museum and art collections in Scotland on behalf of the National Galleries of Scotland, Glasgow Life, and the University of Glasgow.  The framework was intended to set out how the individual capital projects currently developed by partners would add value to Scotland’s museums and art collections; identify how the projects might align and support each other, and reveal areas for partnership working and collaboration.  The framework also needed to highlight relevant funding opportunities and manage project programming with regard to funding applications.  Overall, the framework was expected to present an ambitious vision to potential funders. We began the study through a comprehensive document review, which enabled us to highlight the individual strengths of each project and areas where projects complemented each other.  This was mapped against the strategic priorities of the sector and relevant funders to make initial recommendations for collaboration across different functional areas such as Digital and Public Programme.  The resulting Interim Report was used in subsequent workshops with partners jointly and separately.  Through these workshops, we further refined the suggested collaborations, identified potential supplementary projects in the mid- to long-term, and discussed opportunities to schedule and programme projects in such a way that they may build on previous projects and be well placed to approach funders over time. The final Strategic Framework, delivered in early October 2014, clearly sets out how partners’ current capital projects relate to and complement each other, how partners may work together to strengthen their current and future projects, as well as their organizations as a whole, and what programme may be followed with regard to funding applications over the next decade and beyond.  This is set in the strategic context for the sector as well as the potential funders that were identified for the projects. 



Sir Walter Scott Courthouse

In 2014, Jura Consultants were commissioned by Scottish Borders Council to prepare a Business Plan and Outline Activity Plan for the Sir Walter Scott’s Court House Redevelopment Project in Selkirk in the Scottish Borders. The Court House lies within the heart of the town and was built on the initiative of Sir Walter Scott, the famous writer and Sheriff for the area. As part of this work, Jura Consultants supported the client in developing the project further from an initial options appraisal and feasibility study prepared by LDN Architects.  Jura Consultants, working with LDN Architects, developed initial proposals that addressed the key ambitions of the council with regard transforming the Court House into a successful visitor destination within the region and in conjunction with nearby Abbotsford, Sir Walter Scott’s residence, while also establishing the property as a community focal point. Jura Consultants subsequently facilitated public consultation on these proposals. Two open days were held at the Court House, where members of the public could review current proposals, make comments and provide further suggestions. Jura Consultants and members of the client team were available to answer questions. While the aim of the open day was to capture qualitative insights, demographic data was also collected in such a way that enabled analysis of comments on the basis of contributors’ characteristics such as age, residency and whether they had children. The client team used materials provided by Jura Consultants for further public consultation, which was analysed by Jura Consultants. Jura Consultants also developed, managed and analysed visitor surveys as Abbotsford, to test proposals for the visitor experience at the Court House, and how this may link in with the offer at Abbotsford. Following analysis of the consultation results, Jura Consultants prepared a Business Plan and an Activity Plan that brought the council’s library service, contact centre and museum service together within the Court House to offer community services that are integrated with a strong visitor and heritage offer.



The Holocaust Centre

The Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire was created to provide a place of learning, discussion and understanding of the Holocaust following a Christian family’s visit to Yad Vashem – Israel’s National Holocaust Museum in 1991. After many years of hard work, the Centre opened in the Smith’s family home. Dedicated to providing education programmes related to the Holocaust, the Centre provides two permanent exhibitions, a memorial and reflective space, education and teaching space, beautiful landscaped memorial gardens and viewing galleries to learn about the Holocaust. Holocaust Survivors speak to school and education groups as part of their visit to describe their own personal experiences of the Holocaust. Cognisant of the fact that Survivors are becoming unable to attend the Centre due to age or are passing away, the Centre is developing a project to digitally record the experiences of survivors and thereby to preserve these important stories for future generations. Innovative technology will be used to maximise the potential personal connection between audience member and recorded testimony.

 Jura Consultants assisted the Holocaust Centre in developing the concept and detail for a successful Heritage Lottery Fund Catalyst Endowment fund application. This involved close collaboration with senior staff at the Centre to fully understand its operations and aspirations for the future. This funding will then be match funded by a number of supporters to realise the ambitions for the project.



Sutton’s Hospital in the Charterhouse

The Charterhouse is an ancient charity founded in 1611 located in the beautiful setting of a former Carthusian monastery within the City of London. The charity today provides accommodation and care for retired, single elderly gentlemen known as Brothers. The Revealing the Charterhouse Project is designed to provide greatly increased public access, enjoyment and understanding to/of the Charterhouse site, a remarkable assembly of historic buildings dating from the 14th century, and to/of the collections owned by the Charterhouse and relevant collections owned by the Museum of London. The new presentation will tell the story of the site since the middle ages, right up to the present. A museum exhibition will be established on site curated by the Museum of London. Additionally, more of the building will be opened to visitors through new guided tours and a learning programme.

Jura Consultants was commissioned to work with the project steering group and a range of partners and consultants to develop both the Round 1 and Round 2 bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund. This included a detailed visitor market appraisal, an on-street survey targeting potential users, review of interpretation and activity plans, development of the business case, and coordination of the Round 1 and Round 2 applications . The Revealing the Charterhouse project received a grant award £1.5 million in March 2013.



The National Archives, Kew

The National Archives at Kew wished to scope options for a Shakespeare on record project, to mark the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death in 2016.  The project seeks to highlight the archives’ collection of 35 of the 79 known ‘Shakespeare Documents’ which date from the playwright’s life time and illustrate in particular his rise in fortune in Elizabethan and Jacobean London. The project presents a new direction for the archives in developing audiences, strengthen partnership working, and increasing its profile.  In appraising options, the archives were therefore interested in understanding potential audience interest as well as capacity requirements for the organisation and opportunities for partnerships.  Jura Consultants were commissioned to undertake the appraisal.  The study included in-depth face-to-face and online research of audiences, including visitors and non-visitors to The National Archvies, as well as visitors to Shakespeare’s Birthplace as a key Shakespeare destination managed by Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust.  The Trust was identified by the archives as a key potential project partner.  In total, 1,562 responses were gathered and analysed.  Key potential partners were also contacted and project sites audited.  This research was used to devise options that would best meet the archive’s objectives for the project, while making best use of its resources and capacity and delivering an attractive offer for existing and new audiences within the envelop of partnerships and programmes planned by other relevant organisations.  



Luton Culture

In June 2014, Luton Culture received a First Round Pass from Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the redevelopment of Wardown Park Museum, located in Grade II listed Wardown House set amid Wardown Park, only one mile from Luton’s city centre. In September 2014, Jura Consultants was commissioned to prepare an Audience Development Plan that would provide recommendations to support Luton Culture in preparing an overall activity plan as part of the Second Round application to HLF.  As part of the commission, Jura Consultants mapped current audience research undertaken by Luton Culture and identified gaps, and also reviewed and updated a profile of Luton’s communities.  Based on this, Jura Consultants led a series of staff workshops and public consultations with target audiences on audience development activities.  The final Audience Development Plan included proposals for activities during all project delivery phases and beyond.  The plan also provided recommendations for monitoring and evaluation, to support Luton Culture in closing the gaps that had been identified in its audience data capture and analysis, in order to continue to build audience development activities on the basis of sound understanding of audiences. 



Royal Air Force Museum London

In December 2014 the Royal Air Force Museum in London launched its new permanent exhibition ‘First World War in the Air’ exploring the compelling story of the role, significance and influence of aviation during the Great War. The Heritage Lottery Fund was a key partner in the project providing support as part of its First World War Centenary activity. Evaluating the project, including specifically the profile of visitors engaging with the project, is a requirement by the funder. Jura Consultants was commissioned to perform and analyse in-gallery research with visitors to the exhibition in order for the RAF Museum to fulfil this requirement. In response to the study brief Jura Consultants devised a methodology that would deliver added benefit to the Royal Air Force Museum by producing a tool based on audience segmentation analysis providing more in-depth understanding of audience groups and a tool that can be used to guide and inform future audience development decisions and actions . Visitor consultation was performed via in-gallery surveys conducted over a variety of ‘day types’ in order to ensure a sample representative of the Museum’s population. Sample size exceeded the minimum required for statistical accuracy and the survey included both closed and open questions in order to generate the required level of insight. Outputs of the study included a full report analysing the responses complete with the statistical information required for the completion of the post-project evaluation, and the development of ‘target diagrams’ with supporting narrative describing the motivations, behaviour and profile of segmented audience groups to the exhibition.



St Margaret’s Project Group and Scottish Redundant Churches Trust

St Margaret’s is a Category A Gothic Revival Church designed by the prominent Scottish architect Sir John Ninian Comper and is considered one of Scotland’s finest churches. Standing on a prominent, raised site overlooking the village of Braemar, St Margaret’s is an architectural highpoint and landmark within the village. St Margaret’s was last used for regular worship in 1997 and since 2003 has been on the Buildings at Risk Register. Jura Consultants was engaged by Scottish Redundant Churches Trust as owners of the building and the St Margaret’s Project Group to conduct an Options Appraisal study considering the redevelopment and reuse of St Margaret’s as a heritage and arts attraction capable of driving new audiences to Braemar. This was delivered over the course of two options appraisals testing the feasibility of two arts/ heritage concepts. Options Appraisal assessment criteria included deliverability, sustainability and desirability. It was imperative that the building design scheme responded to the optimum performance programme capable of supporting sustainable operation over the long term. By adopting a collaborative approach working with the project architects Simpson & Brown, our methodology ensured that both design and business case elements of the Options Appraisal process informed and supported each other together identifying the optimum way forward for St Margaret’s. The preferred option which emerged from the Options Appraisal was then subject to sensitivity testing before an action plan was produced setting out the way forward for the project over the short, medium and longer term.



Scottish Borders Council

The Great Tapestry of Scotland is currently Scotland’s largest community-arts project. Devised by internationally renowned author Alexander McCall-Smith in 2010, the Tapestry was sewn by over 1,000 stitchers aged from 4 to 94 working in local groups across the country. The completed artwork was launched at the Scottish Parliament in September 2013, attracting over 30,000 visitors. In 2013, Jura Consultants completed a Feasibility Study for Scottish Borders Council examining the possibility of providing a permanent home for the Tapestry. We were subsequently appointed, in conjunction with a multi-disciplinary design team, to provide a detailed business case for a new visitor centre to be located in the Scottish Borders. The project required full market appraisals of various possible sites, examined the potential for income generation, and considered the potential governance, management and staffing structure. We also provided a thorough financial appraisal, assessed the potential economic impact, and conducted a risk assessment.

The business case informed the decision by the Scottish Government and Scottish Borders Council to commit funding of £2.5 million and £3.5 million respectively to the development of the project in December 2014.



South Ayrshire Council

Jura Consultants was part of a multi-disciplinary consultancy team delivering a Scottish government-funded charrette exploring the development potential for Maybole, South Ayrshire. Concentrating on the tourism development potential for Maybole, Jura Consultants held a workshop session with local business representatives, councillors and members of the local community as well as drop in surgeries throughout the four day consultation and development process. Here we explored the key issues facing Maybole’s tourism sector, the potential for tourism development and how these could complement other development priorities participants identified for the town and discussed with other specialists in our team. This concerned areas such as transport, health, housing and recreation and acknowledged the opportunities and constraints each development area posed on the other. The output of the intense consultation programme was the development of an overall development strategy for Maybole within which the recommended tourism strategy was firmly embedded. This was presented to the local community on the final day of the charrette providing the opportunity for immediate feedback and discussion.



Perth and Kinross Council

Jura Consultants worked as part of a multi-disciplinary team to provide charrettes to the Perthshire towns of Aberfeldy, Auchterarder and Crieff with the aim of allowing the respective communities to articulate their long-term vision for the towns where they live and work. Two charrettes were held in each town, and facilitated the bringing together of a range of stakeholders including residents, local business owners and the local authority to identify critical issues facing the towns and devise strategies for a framework for the future. The first focused on visioning, defining priorities and setting down initial ideas. The multi-disciplinary design team then presented the ideas they had worked on following the first charrette in the second, allowing the community the opportunity to respond and further guide the developing strategies. This produced a clear set of proposals which were incorporated into a final report for each town, which included key initiatives and an Action Plan.



High Life Highland

In March 2015, Jura Consultants were commissioned to undertake a feasibility study for Inverness Castle by High Life Highland on behalf of the Inverness Castle Working Group, jointly chaired by the Scottish Government Minister for Business, Energy and Tourism, and the Highland Council Leader. The aim of the study was to identify and analyse a viable and economically sustainable, high quality use or uses for Inverness Castle, an iconic building in a highly visible location near the centre of Inverness, used by the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service.In particular, the aspiration was to provide access for locals and visitors, and to maximise the impact on the economic, social and cultural life of Inverness and the Highlands.Jura Consultants lead a team of sub-consultants. Jura led on stakeholder consultations with community and business leaders, as well as the working group, to establish the aspirations for Inverness as a successful destination, and to identify the perceived need for the town regards community, business, and tourism, which might be met by a future development of Inverness Castle. Based on this consultation, Jura undertook a detailed appraisal of the potential market and developed financial appraisals of four options of varied uses, including a potential relocation of the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery, and an immersive paid visitor attraction.Throughout this process, we remained in close contact with the client to test our thinking, and presented an Interim and a Final Report to the working group.



Inverlochy Estate

Jura Consultants working with OPEN were commissioned to prepare a development plan for Inverlochy Castle. Jura Consultants provided an assessment of the current tourism and leisure markets in Fort William and the surrounding area and specifically considered the range of visitor accommodation, attractions and activities. The review considered the implications of the activity centres at Glencoe Mountain and the Nevis Range Mountain Resort and their future development. The review then matched potential visitor developments with development sites across the Inverlochy Estate. The resulting Masterplan was submitted to Highland Council in response to their call for the identification of potential development sites.



University of Edinburgh

Jura Consultants has been assisting the University devise an audience development strategy for a project which will see the redisplay and reinterpretation of its historic anatomical collections coupled with a new exhibition space exploring 21st Century developments. Tasked with the relatively open brief of demonstrating the added value of the project to the University, the need to devise an audience development strategy quickly emerged from our research. Informed by consultation with key members of University staff, potential programming partners and with external representatives from within the field, our study demonstrated who the project could target and the outcomes it could deliver for participants, the University and the field more widely. Our report demonstrated the opportunity for the project to significantly widen and improve access to and engagement with the University and its collections and has been a key document informing internal decisions surrounding the project’s development as well as supporting funding applications.