You have given me renewed hope for the future.

Museum Director
during the early days of lockdown 2020

Hilary created and delivered an Away Day, tailored specifically towards what we needed to address.  The work we did on that Day has genuinely been the foundation of everything we have done since ….. now we have a clear sense of purpose and feel we can keep going cos we know what we’re trying to achieve. 

Liz Power

when Director of Museum of Water & Steam
now Director of Historic Buildings & Places 

I just wanted to say a big thank you for facilitating our awayday today.  It went very well, with a high degree of commitment and enthusiasm from everyone (which was reassuring).  I’ve already had some very positive feedback. 

Hilary Simpson
Holst Victorian House

Thank you for all your voluntary
work supporting the
Museums Association Leadership Mentoring Programme –
I know the participants
felt it was hugely
valuable during lockdown.

Tamsin Russell
Workforce Development Officer
Museums Association

Many thanks for facilitating such a thought provoking two days. It was so useful to have some space and time to get the teams together and to reflect and plan.  

We all found the sessions inspiring and would love to work with you again in the future.

Fay Bailey
Shropshire Museums & Archives

Hilary always listens.  Her advice is underpinned by her years of senior management experience so it is both practical and appropriate.  She is a ‘critical friend’ who sees the issues, understands the tensions and delivers her advice with both understanding and humour.

Maggie Appleton
Chief Executive Officer
RAF Museum

Based on her wide experience, Hilary was very clear sighted right from the beginning about where we should be going and how to get there.  She has a focus on pragmatism which suits us very well as she identified our problems and then guided us towards solutions.  The workshops she creates are stimulating and she delivered them with masterly self control when the going got sticky. We have made great progress with her and we are very grateful.

Lt. General James Swift
then Chairman
Regimental Museum
of the
Royal Welsh

It’s a terrific governance report, incredibly useful.  You speak a clear language and it covers everything.

Susanna Denniston
then Chairman
Salisbury Museum

Hilary is fantastically knowledgeable about museums, their problems and how to solve them.

Tony Butler
Executive Director
Derby Museums Trust

Very interactive but there was always time to ask questions; lots of ideas going backwards and forwards between us all.  Lots of inspiration, brought out the best in people!

Treasurer & Trustee
Independent Museum
North Wales

Watch and listen to what Liz Power, when Director, London Museum of Water & Steam says about my work, courtesy of AIM.

I often think
‘what would Hilary do?’
It helps me make a decision.

Director of a historic house, 2023

Just a short note to say how much I enjoyed the Trustee session which will be very beneficial to me and the Museum.  The handouts were the best I have encountered in 20 years as a Trustee.  I sent a similar note of thanks to Hilary who was also a good instructor especially as we were all on Zoom.

Chair of a Regimental Museum 

I worked with Hilary as a Trustee of Bletchley Park.  Her insight and perspectives on museums is endless.  I so respected her wisdom and diplomacy.  A privilege to have her at the governance table.

Mike Sarna
formerly Royal Museums Greenwich
now Adding Value
to public offers

I wanted to send you a personal thank you for your report.  It crystallised the issues in a very clear and constructive manner.
Your huge experience has been absolutely critical to the success of this exercise – so I just wanted to thank you again for taking on the mission!  Much more of the journey to travel for the Trustees – but you have helped them understand there is a way to move forward together – and given them a route map!

Bridport Museum

Your natural and accurate ability
to delve beneath the surface
of a team of (mostly) experienced
and confident people
in order to provide
an overall picture
of what is going on was brilliant!
Thank you!

Bridport Museum

Hilary McGowan worked brilliantly with the IWM team to tease out the really important issues and provided us with a solid foundation on which to base all of the Trustee’s decisions about our estates masterplan.  Her balance of strategy and pragmatism meant that she saved us £15m – the difference between the two options we could have taken were it not for her report.  Thank you!

Dame Diane Lees
then Director General
Imperial War Museum

Past Clients

For a list of all my past clients, please click the button.

Banner Photo – Plas Newydd, home of the Ladies of Llangollen