Press Releases


Dec 20 2016
Friends of Basrah Museum wins major grant from new Cultural Protection Fund

The Friends of Basrah Museum is one of seven recipients of the first grants made by  the new Cultural Protection Fund (CPF), which was launched by The British Council in  partnership with the Department of Cultural, Media and Sport. The fund aims to help  to create sustainable opportunities for economic and social development by fostering,  safeguarding and promoting cultural heritage affected by conflict overseas.    

The Friends of Basrah Museum, a registered UK charity, will work with the Department  of Antiquities and Heritage, Basrah, and the State Board of Antiquities in Baghdad to  complete three new galleries and transfer more cultural items from Baghdad to  Basrah. The grant will also fund professional development for museum staff through  a capacity‐building programme delivered by UK museum professionals, including  training for museum staff on exhibition development, interpretation, graphic design,  conservation and scientific analysis.  

‘This is a fantastic opportunity to build on the success of the first gallery which opened  in September,’ said FOBM Chairman Sir Terence Clark. ‘We are very much looking  forward to working with the Basrah Museum and its Director Qahtan Alabeed to  complete this additional exhibition space and enhance the skills of his team.’    

‘The interest in the Basrah Museum has been phenomenal,’ said Qahtan. ‘It’s a great  example  of  how  the  international  community  can  support  us  to  celebrate  and  conserve the rich cultural heritage of southern Iraq. It’s an exciting time for us!’    

Editorial note
The Friends of the Basrah Museum is a UK‐registered charity established in 2010 to  raise funds for the Basrah Museum and to provide support to its Director, Qahtan  Alabeed.    

The £30 million Cultural Protection Fund aims to protect and preserve physical  monuments and religious sites, as well as 'intangible' heritage: inherited traditions,  beliefs and cultural identity, passed down through generations – all of which have  been increasingly under threat in the Middle East and North Africa as so‐called Islamic  State have gained power in the region.

Clare Bebbington, Friends of Basrah Museum – tel: +44 7403006106