British Numismatic Society : Medals, Prizes   Funds
BNS Medal
The British Numismatic Society

Promoting the study of coins, medals, tokens and banknotes

Medals, Prizes & Funds


British Numismatic Society Museum Volunteer Placement Bursaries

Every year the society offers bursaries for Museum placements. You can read about the previous placements here (2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016).  These are month long placements for which all undergraduate or postgraduate students at UK/EU universities are eligible to apply. Two bursaries of £750 are offered as a contribution towards travel or living expenses.

This year's positions will be held at the Somerset Heritage Centre near Taunton and the Museum of the Order of St John, London. Further details for both positions can be found below and the form to apply here. Please send the forms to by Saturday 17th June 2017.

More about the projects

Somerset Heritage Centre (South West Heritage Trust)

The South West Heritage Trust is an independent charity committed to protecting and celebrating Somerset and Devon's rich heritage. We are delighted to have the opportunity to host a British Numismatic Society volunteer placement at the Somerset Heritage Centre near Taunton.

The volunteer will be based within the Somerset Museums Service curatorial team. They will have the opportunity to begin the task of sorting and documenting one part of North Somerset Council's numismatic collection and to research the provenance of their chosen collection area.

The North Somerset Council numismatic collection includes the following elements:

  • Ancient Greek (c. 134)
  • Roman (c. 432)
  • Early Medieval (c. 9)
  • Medieval coins (c. 18)
  • Post-medieval coins (c. 78)
  • Modern coins - British, foreign and fakes (c. 1621)
  • Jettons (c. 232)
  • Tokens - local and national (c. 580)
  • Bank notes - local and foreign (c. 87)
  • Medals, medallions, seals (c. 180)

Much of the collection is poorly or entirely undocumented. The volunteer will play a key role in enabling us to gain a better understanding of one aspect of the collection so that we can make better use of it in the future.

The volunteer will be supervised by Amal Khreisheh (Assistant Curator of Archaeology) with specialist numismatic support provided by Steve Minnitt (Head of Museum) and Laura Burnett (Finds Liaison Officer for Somerset).

Applicants should explain which area of the collection they would like to focus on during their internship and why.

Maltese Grand Master Coins in the collection of the Museum of the Order of St John

The Museum has an extensive collection of coins relevant to the Knights Hospitaller. The collection of early crusader coinage has been well documented and publicised as part of an AHRC project, the Bearers of the Cross. However, the Maltese Grand Master Coins (1535 - 1798) require further documentation, research and publicity in order to raise awareness of, and increase use of this amazing resource, both internally and externally.

This project will require the volunteer to:

  • Select the coins of a specific Grand Master of interest to them
  • Identify and document the coins, including weighing, measuring and describing
  • Update records on the Museum's database, MuseumPlus
  • Research and write a blog on the coinage of the Grand Master in the collection
  • Photograph selected coins of interest for the blog
  • Contribute to further social media output to increase traffic to the blog

If time allows, this process may be repeated for additional Grand Masters. The volunteer will work on this project independently, supported by the Curator.