The Friends of Valence House, a registered charity (number 1003487), was formed in 1989 to raise funds for and to support the work of Valence House Museum and the Archives and Local Studies Centre. The Friends hold fund-raising events, including Second-hand Book Sales and an annual Winter Sale. Between 2001 and 2007 (when the house was closed for building works for 2½ years), just over £16,000 was raised from the Book Sales. In the year following the re-opening of Valence House in the summer of 2010, the Friends have raised over £3,000 from their Book Sales and Winter Sales.
In the past, members have also worked in the Museum café on Saturdays and helped at Museum events amongst other things. Over the closure period a number of Friends helped with the conservation of exhibits ready for the re-opening. With the re-opening, Friends continue to help Valence House in many ways.
A programme of talks, social events, lunches and visits to places of interest are arranged by the Friends' Committee for members. Meetings are held in the Valence House Visitor Centre. The Friends also visit places of interest by coach in conjunction with Barking Photographic Society.
Over the years the Friends have provided funds for many items, including map cabinets, a display cabinet, sliding shelving, a freezer for the café, album folders, a laptop computer, a screen, digital projector, a Homage Album, a conservation report on the Fanshawe paintings and the restoration of two of these as a trial for future work.
The Friends also provided funding for a number of items ready for the Museum re-opening. The Friends are currently funding the conservation of further paintings in the Fanshawe Collection.
The Friends of Valence House Ecology Group meet for visits to local nature reserves and other places of ecological interest, and hold lectures. It is useful to have a car for these visits, but car-sharing is in operation.
A quarterly newsletter keeps members informed of Friends and Museum events.