Making Festival Call Out for Demonstrators

14 March 2024

Deadline: March 29, 2024

About the Festival

The Ulster Folk Museum are passionate about preserving and nurturing Northern Ireland’s unique heritage skills, customs and traditions. The Making Festival is a two day celebration of these skills held in collaboration with the Construction Industry Training Board Northern Ireland (CITB NI).

The Folk Museum Making Festival was first held in August 2023. It attracted over 2,000 visitors across the two days, and featured a variety of makers from different disciplines including stained glass, signwriting, blacksmithing, basket weaving, leatherwork, woodturning, thatching and many more. There were also opportunities for people to get involved with have-a-go activities. The format will remain similar in 2024, and it is expected that the festival will grow and visitor numbers will increase in the Festival’s second year. The dates for the 2024 edition of the festival are the 17th and 18th August 2024

The festival attracted a wide audience, from children and young families to older people; with both local people and those from overseas attending. The audience was very engaged, asking lots of questions, having a go, and making time to see as many activities as they could.

For this second edition the Ulster Folk Museum are working with Craft NI to select demonstrators in applied arts/craft in order to showcase a full range of heritage crafts and skills.



Makers must be able to meet the following brief…

  • Makers will be expected to attend the festival on both days – 17th and 18th August 2024. Opening hours will be from 10:00-17;00. All demonstrators must be in their agreed locations in line with these hours, with allowance for breaks (TBC).
  • Makers should be using heritage skills and/or traditional materials drawn from the following disciplines: Supported Disciplines.
  • As some the museum currently employs demonstrators in certain disciplines, preference will be given to those working in ceramics, glass, metals and paper to provide a wide range of experiences for visitors.
  • You should be prepared to work on your own craft on suitable heritage-style project(s), using your own materials. These projects will be your own pieces, and will not involve working on museum property or objects unless otherwise stated and agreed in advance.
  • The demonstration will require high positive engagement and interaction with observers. This is a wonderful way to increase understanding of your area of work and of your own practice.
  • Lunches will be provided for makers and delivered to their location to be taken in-situ. Tools must not be left unattended – if makers need to leave their post they should pack away tools and materials as required, and communicate with the Duty Manager on site. Please note that the museum is a non-smoking site
  • Makers will be allowed access to the site to set up either on the evening of Friday 16th August between 5.30pm and 7pm, or Saturday morning from 8:00am (depending on location of demonstration) but set up must be complete by 9am, including all cars being off site. Makers are permitted to leave their property in indoor locations overnight. Whilst there is 24hr security, personal possessions are left at owners’ risk.
  • Take down can take place after 17:15 on Sunday 18th August to ensure visitors are off site.
  • All makers must provide evidence of current public liability insurance and must be prepared to promptly complete and return a risk assessment if they are selected as a supplier. The level of public liability required will be dependent upon the level of risk in the activity. Once a quote has been approved, suppliers will also be contacted by the museum to set up payment details to ensure prompt payment following the festival. Invoices will be paid within a maximum of 30 days of receipt.
  • Please note that demonstrators will not be able to sell their work unless agreed with the museum in advance. Please indicate in your application if you would like to do this. If so, please can you provide up to 6 images of your work and a price list.


Please provide a quote directly to National Museums NI including the following details:

  • A short description of your practice and what your demonstration will involve.
  • What set up you would require from the museum (please consider tables, chairs, electricity access, indoor/outdoor requirements, ventilation etc)
  • What size pitch you require.
  • Your quote, which should include all materials and expenses.
  • Any images you have of previous demos or works in progress will be helpful, up to a maximum of 6.

Please submit all quotes to rosie.legarsmeur@nationalmuseumsni.org before 29th March 2023.




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