Helping museums in the East Midlands to serve the public better

Helping museums in the East Midlands to serve the public better


Regional Emergency Disaster Support (REDS)

REDS is a free membership benefit of the East Midlands Museums Service. To receive this benefit, members must return an Annual Operating Agreement. Click here to download a copy of the Annual Operating Agreement.

There is a strong element of self-help – the REDS Team are there to help those who help themselves.  REDS offers a degree of support, expertise and guidance based on regular Team members’ training.

The REDS Team currently comprises fifteen members – three representing and living in each of the five large counties of the region.  All are museum or record office staff, a mix of conservators and curators, who between them have expertise in most of the specialist subject areas found in historic collections.  Their employers have agreed to release them without notice for duties with the REDS Team.

The REDS Service also offers advice and training outside the region on a consultancy basis.

REDS 24 Hour Emergency Line
0781 501 5091

Please note that the REDS team can only assist you if your Annual Operating Agreement is up to date.

Who can benefit?
Full participation is open to institutions that meet all the following criteria:

  • Have charitable or Local Authority status
  • The governing body is a ‘Museum Member’ of EMMS
  • Hold historic, scientific or artistic collections for public benefit
  • Have a current Emergency & Disaster Plan which is available for inspection
  • Return an annual Operational Agreement for REDS participation

Increasingly, REDS experience and expertise is in demand from other regions, and we are happy to help as far as possible.

What are the benefits of joining REDS?

  • REDS Team members are available to visit participating sites for familiarisation, and to offer independent, informal advice
  • REDS can offer an appropriate response to incidents which place historic collections either under immediate threat (requiring evacuation), or in which they are already damaged and in need of specialist knowledge and handling (salvage)
  • The Team has access to stockpiles of emergency salvage materials established throughout the region; these provide initial equipment to assist in the correct handling of items, particularly following water-damage
  • Participating sites are covered under EMMS’ corporate subscription to Harwell Drying & Restoration Services’ Priority Users scheme
  • Liaison between REDS and the five Fire & Rescue Services in the region
  • All EMMS members can download the Emergency Plan Template free of charge (the Emergency Plan Template is £15 to non-members.)
How do we sign up to REDS?
If your organisation can already meet the participation criteria (see above), please contact EMMS and ask for an Annual Operating Agreement form. This forms a contract of understanding between your organisation and EMMS. It will also ask for details about your organisation, for example the sites to be covered and key holder information. Once this has been completed, signed and returned to EMMS, we will send you a REDS Team 24 Hour Contact Sheet for your Emergency Plan

If your organisation is interested in joining but cannot yet meet all the participation criteria, please contact EMMS for further guidance