Policy statement

The Oakville Museum is owned by The Corporation of the Town of Oakville and operated through the Recreation and Culture Department. The museum comprises a complex of designated heritage structures, a historically significant landscape, important archaeological resources, and a collection of artifacts used in permanent, temporary, and outreach exhibitions.

The Oakville Museum, in its planning and daily operations, shall abide by all relevant municipal, provincial and federal legislative requirements, and shall be guided by fundamental museological standards as established by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and the requirements of the Heritage Easement Agreement between the Town and the Ontario Heritage Trust.


The purpose of the Oakville Museum is to collect, manage, research, preserve and present its heritage resources for the benefit of the public, through exhibitions, publications, community outreach and educational and public programs, with a focus on the historic and continuing stories of Oakville.


Oakville Town Council allocates and controls an annual operating budget for the museum’s operations. For the purposes of Regulation 877 of the Ontario Heritage Act,

Oakville Town Council is the accountable public body that oversees the museum in meeting its missions and goals.

As a condition of receiving an annual Community Museum Operating Grant from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, the Museum is required to demonstrate compliance with the Standards for Community Museums in Ontario. These standards set out the minimum requirements for the operation of a community museum.

In order to ensure compliance with provincial requirements, the Oakville Museum will have written statements and procedures to deal with the following standards and objectives. These statements are subject to review by Council and the provincial Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

Governance standard

Objective of the governance standard
Good governance and demonstrated public accountability are necessary for the museum to operate as a viable not-for-profit organization. The museum is governed by a publicly accountable body that follows a clearly defined mission and goals, and maintains openness in its decisions and operations.

Finance standard

Objective of the finance standard
The museum demonstrates that it is a fiscally responsible public institution. The governing body and the museum follow predetermined policies and procedures to achieve this.

Collections standard

Objective of the collections standard
The artifacts in the museum's collection are a tangible representation of the community's heritage, and to retain their informational and historical value they must be properly cared for and documented. The museum will demonstrate its stewardship and facilitate access to collections and the information they hold by maintaining a well-organized, managed and documented collection.

Exhibition standard

Objective of the exhibition standard
The museum's exhibits provide an important link between the community and its heritage. In the planning and presentation of exhibitions, the museum will strive for accuracy of information, relevance to the community, effective communication, opportunities for learning, and the safe display of artifacts.

Interpretation and education standard

Objective of the interpretation and education standard
Interpretation and education programs provide an opportunity for the community to interact more closely with the museum's collections and information. They also complement other sources of learning in the community, both formal and informal. Through its education programs, the museum reaches audiences of all ages, interests and abilities, and serves as a resource for its communities.

Research standard

Objective of the research standard
Research is an ongoing activity in the museum. Through well-researched exhibits, interpretation, publications and educational programming the museum continually adds to the knowledge, self-discovery and enjoyment of the community. In addition to accommodating staff researchers, the museum has a responsibility to assist outside researchers.

Conservation standard

Objective of the conservation standard
The museum has a responsibility to protect and preserve the collection entrusted to its care, so that future generations will have the opportunity to enjoy and learn from it. The museum will demonstrate its stewardship of the collection by following procedures that ensure the long-term preservation of the collection.

Physical plant standard

Objective of the physical plant standard
The museum’s buildings and grounds must provide a safe, accessible, and functional environment for visitors, staff, the collection and associated activities. The achievement of this objective will be balanced with the need to preserve the integrity of heritage buildings as artifacts themselves, as well as archaeological resources present on the property.

Community standard

Objective of the community standard
A community's heritage is part of its identity. As a steward of the community's heritage, the museum is actively engaged in the community and responsive to its needs. The museum is accessible and relevant, and draws support from its community.

Human resources standard

Objective of the human resources standard
The museum is better able to meet its mandate and carry out its activities by recruiting qualified staff and providing ongoing training opportunities. As an employer, the museum is concerned with the safety, security, well being and continued motivation of the people working for it.


Ontario Heritage Act, Regulation 877, Grants for Museums
Oakville Museum Procedures, Standards for Community Museums in Ontario
Heritage Conservation Easement Agreement, Ontario Heritage Trust