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Dig for museum victory

MUSA-attractions-award-mainbodyYoungsters at MUSA were digging for archaeological “treasure” to celebrate the museum being recognised as Best Visitor Experience 2016.

MUSA, which opened eight years ago, was given the award by the Association of Scottish Visitor Attractions (ASVA) for being “inspiring” and “accessible”, and for constantly striving to improve the visitor experience. MUSA beat fellow finalists the Royal Lochnagar Distillery Visitor Centre and The Helix to take the accolade.

MUSA – the Museum of the University of St Andrews – offers a wide range of activites for children from messy play for babies, to simulated archaeological digs for older youngsters (pictured), and was also recognised for its accessibility for a wide range of people, including those with disabilities.

Photographic workshops and interactive events allowing visitors to explore exhibits are also among the dynamic programme of activities available at the museum, as well as constantly changing exhibitions reflecting the discoveries and research at the University – and the history of the 600-year-old institution itself.

Chairman of the judges Bob Downie said: “MUSA has clearly worked very hard to make the University’s past and present interesting, inspiring and accessible to a diverse audience that includes prospective students, tourists, schools and the local community.

“Their entry demonstrates that not only do they research and review how the visitor experience is being received by customers, they then use this feedback to continually improve and develop the quality of their offer to as wide an audience base as possible.”

Emma Jane Wells, Co-Director (Operations and Public Engagement) at MUSA, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have won this prestigious award from ASVA.

“Since opening eight years ago we have worked hard to identify the visitor journey at MUSA and have strived even harder to continuously evaluate and improve upon this journey. St Andrews is a town with many excellent heritage attractions, yet MUSA stands out because of our excellent customer service, wide-ranging events programme and varied, high-quality temporary exhibitions.

“Winning the prestigious ASVA Best Visitor Experience Award will not only help MUSA attract more visitors, but is a fantastic morale boost for our team who have worked hard on a range of projects to make MUSA a leader in delivering an excellent visitor experience.”

ASVA Chairman Douglas Walker said: “This was an outstanding entry, with staff at the attraction demonstrating enthusiasm, passion and commitment to exceeding visitor expectations and providing them with a truly first class experience.”


Notes to news editors

Image caption: Joanna, 7, and Rosalie, 4, dig for “treasure” in MUSA’s archaeological dig simulation to celebrate the museum’s win as Best Visitor Experience 2016.

For more information about events at MUSA visit the museum website.

Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office, contactable on 01334 467310 or proffice@st-andrews.ac.uk.

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