Pre-Visit Information for Schools

Pre-Visit Information for Schools

Pre-Visit Information for Schools

The following information is provided to help inform your own risk assessment.

We recommend you undertake a site visit before you bring your class.

Supervision and Behaviour

All teachers and accompanying adults are responsible for student supervision while at the Wallace Collection. Please adhere to the following supervision ratios at all times:

  • KS1–2 classes — 1 adult to 6 students
  • KS3–5 classes — 1 adult to 10 students

Teachers are the lead supervisor for their group and must remain with them at all times, with the required supervision ratios. Teachers must ensure that students behave in a way that reduces the likelihood of accidents or damage.

Safeguarding 

Please ensure you have read and understood our Safeguarding Policy and Reporting Procedures.

All staff and educators are appropriately DBS checked, and adhere to the Wallace Collection’s Safeguarding and Health and Safety policies.

In the event of a lost child, please inform Wallace Collection staff immediately. Staff are identifiable with a branded photo ID card.

The Wallace Collection's safeguarding personnel are:

  • Safeguarding Lead: Andrew Nelson, Head of Learning and Digital
  • Deputy Safeguarding Lead: Amy Chang, Formal Learning Producer
  • Deputy Safeguarding Lead: John Anderson, HR Manager

The Wallace Collection is in the borough of Westminster; the Westminster safeguarding team can be contacted on +44 (0) 207 641 4000 (+44 (0) 20 7641 6000 out of hours) or AccesstoChildrensServices@westminster.gov.uk.

On Arrival 

Schools groups should arrive at the main entrance of the museum on Manchester Square. Please see our Visit Us pages for detailed information on how to get here.

Groups will be welcomed by our Front of House staff, who will inform the Learning team that you have arrived. You will then be introduced to the educator who has been booked to lead your session.

Please note that your group may be split into smaller sub-groups of 10, for manoeuvring around our galleries. Each sub-group will require supervision by a teacher or accompanying adult.

During Your Session 

Much of your session will take place in public galleries across the Ground Floor, Lower Ground Floor and First Floor. There are many museum objects such as furniture and porcelain on open display, and spaces can sometimes become busy with other visitors. Session leaders will guide your group through these spaces but teachers and accompanying adults are ultimately responsible for student supervision and behaviour during the visit.

Depending on the session you have booked and if you are staying for lunch, you may visit the Learning Studio or Meeting Room on the Lower Ground Floor.

Toilets are located on the Lower Ground Floor.

Floor plans

General Health and Safety

The Wallace Collection has a Health and Safety Policy to help minimise risk to visitors and people working in the museum.

Risk assessment of organised learning activity is undertaken and regularly reviewed by Health and Safety advisors. Some specific notes to inform your own risk assessment follow.

  • Uneven surfaces/trip hazards: Wallace Collection staff will report and remove hazards according to our policies. Please be aware that the museum contains many freestanding items of furniture and extra care should be taken when moving around as a group.
  • Spillages: Museum spaces are monitored regularly. If there are any spillages, these should be reported and will be dealt with by Wallace Collection staff immediately.
  • Falling objects: Please note that many objects in the Collection are on open display and are at risk of falling if touched. Museum staff will explain how to visit safely at the outset of your session. All visitors are expected to keep a safe distance from museum objects and should not run in the building. Teachers and accompanying adults must accompany their groups at all times and be alert to potential risk.
  • Staircases: All of our staircases have handrails and will be kept clear of obstacles. A lift is available to all floors.

We undertake regular checks of museum spaces to ensure they are kept clean and clear, and safe for use.

Fire and Emergency Evacuation 

The Wallace Collection's fire alarm is a continuous, electronic siren.

In the event of an evacuation, school groups should follow the instructions of Wallace Collection staff to the nearest emergency exit, marked by standard green evacuation signage.

The designated evacuation meeting point for visiting school groups is the corner of Manchester Square that meets Spanish Place. The Learning team will meet you there to arrange safe return to the museum as soon as possible. Teachers and accompanying adults are responsible for keeping their group together and supervising their students at all times.

First Aid

A first-aider is always on duty at the museum. If you or your group require first aid, please notify a member of staff immediately.

More serious accidents or incidents should be reported to 999 immediately.

COVID-19

Please read our Visit Safely pages for the most up to date information regarding COVID-19 safety measures.

The Wallace Collection implements restrictions and other safety measures in accordance with government guidance on COVID-19 for national museums.

In advance of your visit, the Learning team will contact you regarding any changes to procedures since the point of booking.

Insurance

The Wallace Collection is indemnified against all valid insurance claims by HM Government.

Further Advice

If you have further questions, please get in touch with us at schools@wallacecollection.org. We will be happy to help you plan a safe and enjoyable visit.