Saturday, 17 December 2011

Behind the scenes

As mentioned on the museum's Twitter account (@dartmoorlife) the museum is now closed for the winter. However work still goes on behind closed doors!

Group and school visits are arranged and prepared for, the John Young Gallery (which can be used for other displays and events) can be booked, so displays have to be set up and removed. At the moment a very lovely art exhibition is currently on display showing paintings, jewellery and embroidery, all which is for sale. Museum events are also finalised and prepared for. When Santa visited the museum a couple of weeks ago the downstairs gallery was transformed into a Christmas grotto for him. 

Relating to the museum's collection a big spring clean is undertaken, with items being cleaned and moved if needed. As always work is done on data-basing the entire museum collection. A long and laborious task, but still very rewarding. The data -basing involves documenting the items, by recording the physical aspects of the object- what it is, its condition, measurements etc, as well as the objects history- who made it and where, and how it came to be at the museum. A large majority of our collection has been donated very kindly to us. The museum has a wide variety of items relating to Dartmoor's long history. Cooking implements, tie presses, clothes, animal harnesses, and farm equipment are all included. 

                                          MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Welcome to my blog

So, this is my first blog!! I currently volunteer at my local museum in Okehampton- the Dartmoor Life Museum. I hope that this blog will not only attract more visitors to the museum, but also to help get people interested in their local history. Each month I'll add more information giving insights to the collection and the work which is going on behind the scenes. 

The Musuem

In 1976 a group of volunteers raised the funds to purchase a home for their growing collection on the variouse items which make up Dartmoor's rich history. An old granary in Okehampton which dates back to 1811 became the ideal place to display the collection and has done ever since. The picturesque cobbled courtyard features granite rails on which the wheels of delivery carts would have run on. It is also believed that the courtyard is a Medieval burgage plot. The granaray still has its working water wheel to the side of the building. The museum opened to the public in 1982 and since this date much has changed. Work has continued to enhance, develop and add to the collections, gallerys and facilities available in order to present and preserve in the best possible way Dartmoor's history. The Dartmoor Life museum features and investigates the lives of the people who have lived and worked on Dartmoor. Starting in the Bronze Age, the museum shows life through the times of the Roman's and Victorian's. Additionally the many industries which have grown out of Dartmoor are explored- farming, mining, blacksmithing, cider pressing have all played their part. Additionally, the military history of Dartmoor is shown. 

The museum has much to offer- the John Young Gallery which offers exhibitions, functions and conference facilities, a museum shop, nearby tearooms, handling collections which available to loan to schools and groups. 

Most importantly the museum offers the chance to explore Dartmoor's varied and exciting history.

Follow the museum on Twitter - Dartmoor Life Museum  @dartmoorlife
or add the museum on Facebook