Family Friendly Award 2019

In March 2019 Cornwall Museums Partnership and South West Museum Development hosted the annual Cornwall Heritage Awards to celebrate and champion the amazing work that’s taking place at museums and heritage organuisations in Cornwall.

The Family Friendly Award celebrates projects and activities in museums that create excellent all-round family visits.

Family Friendly Award – Winner
Padstow Museum: Padstow New Museum

Padstow Museum’s move to a new location in the town has greatly increased the accessibility for families visiting the museum. The new museum has level access for pushchairs, a pushchair parking space, and new interactive displays where families can explore digital photographs, learning together to answer questions about the images.

 

Family Friendly Award – Highly Commended
Lostwithiel Museum: Toddler Trail

Lostwithiel Museum’s Toddler Trail is a free activity helping families with young children to engage with the museum’s collection. Families must explore the museum to find the 12 naughty little rubber ducks who have escaped the towns duck race and are now hiding in the museum. There is a quiz sheet for the guardians to fill in for the children as they spot the 11 ducks and one disguised as a red apple. When all ducks are found each child receives a reward sticker.

 

Family Friendly Award – Highly Commended
Newquay Heritage Archive & Museum: Children and Adult Cornish Project Cases

Newquay Heritage Archive and Museum have created a series of 10 Cornish Project Cases to engage visiting families to learn about various Cornish themes including local minerals, Cornish places, and learning about the Cornish language. Encouraging teamwork, each case has all the necessary books, information, and equipment for two to three people to complete tasks and learn something new about the theme of the case.

Heritage Heroes Award 2019

In March 2019 Cornwall Museums Partnership and South West Museum Development hosted the annual Cornwall Heritage Awards to celebrate and champion the amazing work that’s taking place at museums and heritage organisations in Cornwall.

The Heritage Heroes award celebrates the dedication and achievements of heritage volunteers.

 

Joint Winner – Heritage Heroes Award (Larger Organisations)
Cornwall’s Regimental Museum: Relaxed Opening Team

 

This amazing volunteer team was crucial to the success of Cornwall’s Regimental Museum’s first relaxed openingdesigned for people with autism or sensory processing disorders. The insights of the team, who had experience in healthcare, nursing and teaching students with special educational needs, helped transform the museum; from adjusting levels of lighting and sound, to creating the sensory space and offering craft activities for children and young people of differing abilities. The team’s warm welcome and hands-on support meant they received lots of positive feedback. Their relaxed openings are now a regular feature at the museum.

 

 

Joint Winner – Heritage Heroes Award (Larger Organisations)
Museum of Cornish Life, Helston: Helston Makes It!

 

Led by Jude Carroll, this group of five proactive, hardworking and truly collaborative volunteers developed and ran Helston Makes It! a two-week celebration of the town and the museum, experienced by over 1200 people. Building on the success of last year’s festival, the team took the sessions into schools, working with a local school to produce an animated film. Over the two weeks of the festival the team created an exhibition, a programme of 17 workshops, a screening of the local school’s animated film, and an end celebration event showcasing the skills of over 30 local makers.

 

Winner – Heritage Heroes Award (Smaller Organisations)
Lawrence House Museum, Launceston: Launceston U3A Local History Group.

 

The Launceston U3A Local History Group have been working for several years surveying and photographing the buildings within the old walled town and researching their history. Their work resulted in the popular ‘Launceston Buildings: Vernacular Buildings within the Old Town Walls of Launceston’ exhibition. Over a period of nearly 20 years, the History Group has also produced a series of other local history monographs, which provide a permanent record of the research by the history group and other volunteers. A copy of each monograph is sent to the Cornish Studies Library.

 

Highly Commended – Heritage Heroes Award (Larger Organisation)
Telegraph Museum Porthcurno: Engineer Volunteer Team

The dedicated Engineer Volunteer team at Telegraph Museum Porthcurno give approximately 2,500 hours time to the museum every year. Their knowledge is essential to servicing and repairing the delicate and specialist equipment that is central to the museum’s Designated Collection and visitor experience. This includes the fully working Automatic Regeneration (Regen) system situated in the tunnels that forms the only authentic, working telegraph station remaining in the UK. This year the volunteers have been given a dedicated space in the museum to create the exhibition, ‘I Spy: The Secret Listeners’, which runs April – November 2019.

 

Highly Commended – Heritage Heroes Award (Smaller Organisation)
Padstow Museum: A New Museum for Padstow

When a member of the community left a generous bequest to the museum, the volunteer-led Padstow Museum focused their efforts and organised themselves into task force teams to move the museum to a new permanent location at the Old Station House. Determined to address the issues faced in their old building, the team set out to make the new museum family friendly and welcoming. This included having level access for pushchairs and wheelchairs and a hearing loop for visitors and new volunteers. Their hard work paid off as in the first five weeks, the museum received over 2,800 visitors – well above their usual number for that time of year and a great deal of positive feedback. They have also gained over £1,000 in donations – more than their previous annual intake.

 

 

 

Highly Commended – Heritage Heroes Award (Smaller Organisation)
Newquay Heritage Archive & Museum: Newquay Old Cornwall Presentation Team

The presentation team at Newquay Heritage Archive & Museum carry out the vital work of sharing the local heritage and publicising the museum. The team carry out large numbers of visual presentations throughout the year to schools, colleges, social groups and other organisations. These can cover geographically the whole of Cornwall and include not just Newquay-related historical and cultural topics, but also a wide range of Cornish subjects. Over the last year, the team carried out displays and exhibitions at ten local festivals and events interacting with over 2500 individuals, eight school and college activities with about 250 young people, 24 visual presentations, guided walks and site tours involving 850+ people. The friends and connections the presentation team make ensures the future of the museum.

 

Spotlight on: Imogen Crarer, Assistant Curator Intern at Museum of Cornish Life, Helston

In this blog we catch up with Imogen Crarer, Assistant Curator Intern at Museum of Cornish Life, Helston.

Imogen’s six-month long internship is funded by Arts Council England through Cultivator and Cornwall Museums Partnership, and is one of five new internships supported by Cornwall Museums Partnership’s NPO programme. These opportunities aim to give hands-on, practical experience and create new pathways into the heritage sector.

Imogen moving a 1920s Flapper Dress ready for an exhibition.

Imogen says, ‘My role as Assistant Curator Intern is wonderfully varied. It is giving me skills and experience in collections management, exhibitions, community engagement and meeting the daily needs of a busy museum. I have enjoyed working with the supportive staff and volunteers at MCL, and interacting with our visitors has made my experience very fulfilling. Overall, the internship is valuable in building on knowledge gained from my MA in Modern History from King’s College, London, improving my future employability in the heritage sector through specific training and more generally by providing me with transferable skills.’

Hunting out objects in one of the museum’s store rooms.

Throughout her internship Imogen has regularly featured in livestreams on Museum of Cornish Life, Helston’s social media, telling the stories behind the museum’s collections. You can find these livestreams on Youtube or by following Museum of Cornish Life on Facebook.

Cornwall Museums Partnership’s NPO programme has supported the creation of 20 jobs, five paid internships and five apprenticeships. To find out more about CMP’s NPO programme click here.

Spotlight on: Katie Wylie, Marketing and Digital Intern at Royal Cornwall Museum

After five fantastic months, I am now nearing the end of my placement as the Marketing and Digital Intern at the Royal Cornwall Museum in Truro. My role at the RCM has primarily involved assisting the Marketing and Digital Lead, Sophie Meyer, in promoting stories from the museum’s collections. This has mainly been achieved through a mix of social media, blogs and online exhibitions.

I have also had the opportunity to attend a number of talks and conferences, including the Museums Association ‘Digital Basics Bootcamp’ at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester. I have learnt a lot about the importance of creating great content – using my knowledge to explore the collections, stores and archives, and to bring hitherto unknown tales to the fore.

Knowing that my term at the RCM would take in International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month (both in March), I have been particularly inspired to focus on the women that are represented in the museum’s collections.

Staff and patients, including Red Cross nurses, outside the Royal Cornwall Infirmary, Truro, Cornwall. 21st July 1916. © From the collection of the RIC (TRURI-TRUhrc-9). As featured in the online exhibition ‘Behind the Lines: Personal Stories of the First World War’.

For example, with the recent online exhibition ‘Behind the Lines: Personal Stories of the First World War’, I was keen to incorporate pieces on both Red Cross nurses and the Women’s Land Army in Cornwall. The RCM’s photographic collection clearly shows their remarkable contribution to the war effort – training to help the sick and wounded and taking on demanding agricultural work. It was a privilege to research their time at the Royal Cornwall Infirmary and Tregavethan Farm near Truro.

Members of the First World War Women’s Land Army at Tregavethan Farm, Truro, Cornwall. April-May 1917. © From the collection of the RIC (TRURI-1972-2-56). As featured in the online exhibition ‘Behind the Lines: Personal Stories of the First World War’.

Likewise, I am currently participating in a campaign devised by the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Using social media, they have been asking the public whether they can name five women artists. Many cannot, calling attention to the fact that women have not been treated equally in the art sphere, and today remain dramatically underrepresented and undervalued in museums, galleries and auction houses worldwide.

In a bid to help the NMWA promote gender equality, we have joined the #5WomenArtists movement – pledging to release a series of blog posts highlighting five women artists that are included in the RCM’s collections. A physical trail has also been put together to emphasise their work within the museum.

The posts will feature artists from a range of time periods, who use a variety of different mediums for expression. The first article was about Esther M. Moore (1857-1934), who worked as a colliery agent before becoming a sculptor in 1891. Her Art Nouveau and Symbolist piece ‘At the Gates of the Past’ is one of my favourite objects at the museum. The following instalments will be published on each Friday in March.

‘At the Gates of the Past’ by Esther M. Moore (1857-1934). As featured in the #5WomenArtists blog series with the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my internship and look forward to making the most of my last few weeks at the RCM.

– Katie Wylie
Marketing and Digital Intern, Royal Cornwall Museum

You can follow #5WomenArtists here: https://www.royalcornwallmuseum.org.uk/5womenartists

The online exhibition ‘Behind the Lines: Personal Stories from the First World War’ can be found here: https://www.royalcornwallmuseum.org.uk/exhibition/behind-the-lines-personal-stories-of-the-first-world-war

Board Development: Succession Planning

By now you know how much I love a sporting analogy. So it should come as no surprise that I’m going to use another one here to look at why being strategic about your board development and succession plan will help your organisation to deliver greater impact and focus resources more effectively.

After England won the Rugby World Cup in 2003 a lot of the experienced squad retired, and we had a hiatus of about ten years when frankly we weren’t that great. Mike Catt, one of that winning squad summed it up, “There was no legacy from our win. We didn’t pass anything on.” This has often confused me with British sports, why’d we get so good and then suddenly after a great achievement we’d seem to have to begin all over again.

I asked a friend of mine, a professional rugby player, why this was. His answer was succession planning. Well, his answer was a bit longer than that, but that was a large part of it. He used the example of the All Blacks, a team that has dominated the game for decades, they are the most successful sports franchise in history.

Museums and other charities can learn a lot from how the All Blacks, and other great sporting teams evolve and develop, continually striving to be better and do better.

 

“We always want to make sure that the place we go to, we leave it in as good if not better shape than when we arrived.”

– Sam Whitelock, City AM 2015

The All Blacks have a clear culture and values that they embed in every player, from the grassroots to the elite and all the support staff of coaches, trainers, in fact everyone involved in the game. ‘Better people make better All Blacks’ is the mantra that underpins the team’s culture.

Steve Tew, CEO of New Zealand Rugby says, “You have to live those values and live them 24/7 otherwise they end up being just words on a strategic plan or brand poster or some other fancy document.” They unite behind a shared vision of what success looks like.

The All Blacks never lose sight of who they are playing for: family, friends, their team mates and every single Kiwi scattered across the world. This is a lesson for every charity, to keep your stakeholders at the heart of everything that you do.

The All Blacks train relentlessly, elite players constantly hone the fundamental basic skills of their game, continually improving. An All Black would never consider they have nothing left to learn or suggest that they have all the necessary skills to deliver the best they can. The All Blacks have as high expectations of themselves as their fans do. Resting on their laurels is not an option.

To learn more about effective board development, please see our Governance eLearning modules (coming soon) or get in touch with us about our Good Governance programme by emailing clare@cornwallmuseumspartnership.org.uk.

– Clare Pennington, RPR Programme Manager

Spotlight on: Si Durrant, Trainee Curator at Wheal Martyn Clay Works

We catch up with Si Durrant at Wheal Martyn, one of the Trainee Curators supported by Cornwall Museums Partnership’s NPO programme, to talk about his showcase ‘Clay Stories: unearthing stories from our villages and towns’.

“I am now halfway through my placement as Wheal Martyn’s Trainee Curator. My role at Wheal Martyn primarily involves assisting Jo (Curator) and Nikita (Exhibition and Engagement Officer) with unlocking stories from the collection and archives held at Wheal Martyn. As a Trainee Curator, I have been gaining valuable on-the-job experience and attending training sessions at partner museums across Cornwall. I have already seen great variety in the role of a museum Curator. This has included an introduction to museum accreditation, health and safety training, record keeping, working with schools, collections handling, collections hazards, digitising negatives and, more recently, combining these new skills to curate my first ever showcase exhibition.”

“‘Clay Stories: unearthing stories from our villages and towns’, features a selection of curios from the St. Austell china clay area, with each display telling a unique community story from the last 200 years. Village shops, sports, housing, clothing, forgotten trades, industry, and the impact of two World Wars are represented in the extensive collection.”

“The theme of the showcase is stories from our villages and towns. The majority of our collection focuses on the industrial heritage of the china clay industry; however, buried within these c.10,000 items are certain objects that hold hidden stories about a specific area of the local community. For example, our Rolls Royce figurine and mould represents the relationship between the village of St. Dennis and the Aerospace Industry. In fact, this item has just been nominated for an award – Cornish Object of the Year 2019.”

“My research for the showcase began with a map of the St. Austell china clay district – an area which is bounded by St. Austell Bay in the south and the A390 to the north. This map revealed over 50 villages and hamlets that were in close proximity to clay workings. Once I had a list of villages, I was able to search our onsite database for relevant objects, documents, photographs and film. Over the course of several weeks I was able to shortlist these items and then research the stories behind them. Finally, these stories were condensed into a display in the museum atrium and weekly social media posts.”

“I have really enjoyed the huge variety this internship has offered me and greatly look forward to the next three months.”

Colin Vallance, Director of Wheal Martyn says, “It’s been fantastic to have Si as part of the team, uncovering some of the many stories that are hidden within our museum collection and sharing these with our local communities and visitors. Si’s internship is part funded by the European Social Fund, Arts Council England and Cornwall Council, as part of a Cornwall Museums Partnership NPO programme and we are very grateful for their support.”

‘Clay Stories: unearthing stories from our villages and towns’ is free to enter and runs until the end of February 2019. The showcase coincides with Wheal Martyn’s Cornwall Residents’ Pass Offer; for 12 months, admission passes are available at a reduced price of just £6.50 for an adult ticket.

Wheal Martyn would like to encourage visitors during January and February to discover some of these fascinating stories linked to local villages and towns. If you are inspired to share stories from your own village, pop into the museum, email info@wheal-martyn.com or share them on Facebook (@whealmartyncw).

For more information about the Cornish Object of the Year Award 2019 and to vote click here.

Cornish Object of the Year Award 2019 Vlog – Cornish Miner’s Sweetheart Jewellery

Hi, I’m Peter the new Marketing and Events Intern at Cornwall Museums Partnership.

Part of my role at CMP is to help deliver events including the Cornwall Heritage Awards in March. The Cornwall Heritage Awards is a fantastic opportunity for museums and heritage organisations to showcase some of the amazing work they are doing, and this year the Cornish Object of the Year Award has been opened up to the public so everybody can have their say.

One of the great aspects of my internship is visiting the different museums in Cornwall, both big and small, and speaking to the staff and volunteers. Over the upcoming weeks I will be visiting each of the shortlisted objects and finding out from the staff and volunteers about the amazing stories behind the objects and why they were nominated.

In this first vlog, I visit Murdoch House in Redruth to hear about the story behind the Cornish Miner’s Sweetheart Jewellery. Murdoch House was originally the residence of inventor William Murdoch and was the first house in the world to have gas lighting. Murdoch House is now home to the Cornish Global Migration Programme, and it is their director Mike who nominated the object for Cornish Object of the Year Award 2019.

The next vlog will feature the ‘Spirit of Ecstasy’ hood ornament and mould, nominated by Wheal Martyn Clay Works.

– Peter Lower, Marketing and Events Intern