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Community Collections Showcase

Portsmouth Museum’s next major exhibition 'A Hard Choice' opens on 14 February and showcases treasures chosen from Portsmouth's own collections by Rosalinda Hardiman. Rosalinda has looked after the Museum's collections for over 35 years and this exhibition celebrates her knowledge and joy in the objects she has cared for and chosen to join the collections during this time.

We would also like you to share your own collections with the city! Have you been collecting something since childhood or do you collect something now? What attracted you to collect these things? It doesn’t matter what you collect, we’d like to hear from you.

We have reserved one showcase in the exhibition to show selected highlights from 3 collections belonging to Portsmouth residents. Entries will be reviewed and a maximum of 12 collections will be shortlisted. A judging panel will then select 3 winners to be displayed in turn in ‘A Hard Choice’ at Portsmouth Museum.

Download the Community Collections Showcase Entry Form

If you have a collection that you would like to be considered for inclusion, you need to:

- Tell us about your collection – why you are collecting; what’s special about it; why you are enthusiastic about collecting – in no more than 250 words.
- Please include: the size of the biggest item in the collection, how many items are in the collection, dates of items in the collection e.g. 1890 – 1950, what the items in the collection are made of, and any other useful background information.
- Take 1 photograph which shows all or some of your collection together, so the contents are clearly recognisable.
- Take 3 individual photographs of your 3 favourite items from your collection.
- Please read the criteria carefully to check that your collection can be considered for shortlisting and that you agree to all the requirements.
- Email your photographs and entry form to: by 15 February 2015
- Please note that each photograph must be sent as a jpeg file, maximum size of each file is 200KB. Please only email 4 photographs.


- You must have a reason for collecting your items and be able to explain this.
- Collections must consist of objects that can fit inside the showcase. Maximum measurement of any one object is approx: 30 x 60 x 60 cm or 55 x 60 x 60cm (height x width x depth). NB: If an object of this size is shown then only 1 or 2 objects from a collection will fit in the showcase.
- Entries and photographs can only be submitted by email. Local libraries can help with access to computers during their opening hours.
- Shortlisted entrants will be informed by the end of February.
- If shortlisted, entrants must be available throughout the selection day, and also be able to deliver and collect a selection of their items to Portsmouth Museum (2 or 3 March, exact date and times to be confirmed)
- Successful entrants agree to the Museum selecting which of their items are displayed, and to lending these items to the Museum for an agreed period of around 2 months. Items must be delivered to and collected from the Museum, dates and times to be agreed. If necessary, the items may be lent for a longer period if there is any unforeseen delay with the following collection’s display.
- Successful entrants confirm that they are the legal owners of the Objects and are legally entitled to lend the Objects to Portsmouth Museums. The successful entrant is not aware of any past, current or potential claim by a third party.
- Successful entrants must be able to provide insurance values for the selected objects.
- Successful entrants are not allowed to sell any of the selected items while on display at the Museum.
- Successful entrants agree to be photographed, interviewed and filmed for use within the exhibition and for publicity. They must also be available to be interviewed for a short film to be shown in the exhibition.
- Successful collections will be chosen by the judging panel, whose decision is final. As well as looking at the items, judges will also consider the written entry explaining why the items are collected and what makes it a collection. The 3 chosen collections must show good variety – so they will be a different subject matter and types of items to each other.
- Portsmouth Museums decision in all matters is final.