Museum History
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 Date   Origin   Summary 
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Encouraging wildflowers on the museum site / Museum committed to caring for downland site in environmentally friendly way. Museum's wildflower meadow next to Poplar Cottage flowered and was scythed in August by Mark Allery (award-winning English scyther). Dominance of crested dog's-tail grass.
Working with South Downs National Park Authority, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew/Wakehurst Place and the Weald Meadows Partnership on a downland restoration project on the north-facing bank between Hambrook Barn and Tindalls Cottage.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Volunteers develop the museum's working smithy / Making items needed for projects on and off site, including: two brackets to hold magnifying glasses so that finger joints on oak laths used to construct the Downland Gridshell can be inspected by visitors; cart hooks for carts and wagons in collection; new hoops to add to collection of traditional toys; fire irns for the Toll House from Upper Beeding; gates for the Toll House and the smithy yard; set of roehead nails for Chichester Canal Basin Society for lock gates; wroguht-ion window frame for Tindalls Cottage.
Four years ago the British Association of Blacksmith Artists held a 'forge-in' at the museum - set of iron tree markers made have been relocated to a clearing in the woodlands so that they can be seen together, helping explain working woodland.
Smithy, from Southwater, West Sussex, typical of many smithies of the region. Given to museum in 1970 by Mr Piper.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Historic Buildings - New roofs for two buildings / Hambrook Barn and house from Walderton re-thatched following
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Demonstrating flax processing /
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Filming 'Tudor Monastery Farm' / Following success of BBC Two's living history series 'Victorian', 'Edwardian' and 'Wartime' Farm', museum chosen for 'Tudor Monastery Farm'. Archaeologist Peter Ginn and historian Ruth Goodman front six-part series with archaeologist Tom Pinfold. Sheep farming, harvesting, fashioning printing printing press, building Tudor clock. Intricacies of social structure - relationships between lay wrkforce and inner sanctum, the wider world and the whole monastic community. Filmed by Lion TV. Co-ordinated by Julie Aalen.
Win a 'Tudor Monastery Farm' book competition. Guided tours planned.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Historic Gardens Week focuses on gardens through the centuries / Museum's six period gardens representing five centuries of gardening. Visitors could compare herbs, vegetables and flowers, chat to the team, see the herbarium and take part in guided tours, talks and demonstrations.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Celebrating Sussex! / Brand new event: "Sussex Day" held in Juneon St Richard's Day. Highlighted musuem's building exhibits from Sussex, including first change to view progres on Tindalls Cotage. Also: Brighton Mummers performing their 'Medieval Romp'; South Down Folks Folk Singers; Sussex Folk Orchestra; Chanctonbury and Ditchling morris dancing groups; 'Gully', Brighton & Hove Albion football club mascot; stoolball; marbles, which has been played in Tinsley Green for centuries; opportunity to taste Sussex food, and discover Sussex crafts; range of history and local interest groups. NB: also:Museum Library open all day with display.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013In Brief - Challenging conditions for the gardening team! / Carlotta Hlolt reports: Cold weather, deer damage, but germination eventually good and managed to bring in a good harvest.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013School Services / Wide range of Tudor, Victorian, craft or building-based workshops; Arts Award - Discover in a day! - activity pack for teachers; Shakespeare Week; New History Gang;
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013People / Welcome to three new staff members (with outlines of backgrounds):
Simon Bridge - Retail Manager; Phyllis Gorrian (beter known as Phil) - Volunteer Administrator; Ed Downs - Adult Learning Assistant
Obituaries (with outline of their contribution to the museum):
Ray Hurley; Bob Borley; Leon van Ewijk; Ian Constantinides; Howard Stenning; Patrick Garland; Marie Felicia Hett
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Farming - Sun and warmth provides good harvest / Maris Widgeon wheat crop for thatching straw, barley grown for winter bedding yielded c450 bales, double last year's.
Hillside between Hambrook Barn and Tindalls Cottage cut for hay by horseman Mark Buxton. Site Manager Nick Conway produced 200 bales and 29 round bales of haylage from other areas of the site making us self-sufficient in feed for the winter months.
Bayleaf orchard produced bumper crop of apples.
Small crop of hops harvested from the museum gardens for the 'Harvest Ale' "On the Hop" brewed by Ballards Brewery at Rogate and available for purchase at the Autumn Countryside Show. Hop garden at Tindalls Cottage will be planted for next year.
Pea crop planted in Bayleaf field strips by the 'Tudor Monastery Farm' presenters and harvested as part of the programme
Grateful to Jonathan Fulford of Bartholomews of Chichester and his parents-in-aw Dr and Mrs Edwards who have successfully grown a trial plot of Chidham wheat to replenish our seed s \\
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Great day out at the Rare Breeds Show / Several hundred cattle, sheep, pigs, goats and poultry of numerous breeds. Also fleeces and handspun products from local producers.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Vintage & Steam draws the crowds / Vintage & Steam event highlights: parades of traction engines and commercial vehicles, demonstrations of a steam bicycle and a Fowler ploughing engine, the St Giles steam fire engine drawn by John & Rowena McDermott's Percherons, Chichester & District Society of Model Engineers, model steam boats on the lake, steam-driven fairground gallopers and saw, MG Car Club, vintage tea tent and music.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Collections / Maintenance & Conservation:
Watersfield Stable - external weatherboarding replaced with new elm. Hand water pump and stone trough removed.
Gypsy Caravan - work now complete - stewarded by Mark Everington, son of donor Mrs Everington.
Sussex Wagon - blue boat wagon withdrawn from Wiston Wagon shed for extensive restoration. One of Museum's Sussex Wagons chosen for this year's harvest. Repainted.
Other Curatorial Work:
Open Store - in addition to lunch-time tours, Artefact Store opened on other day-long occasions usually co-inciding with special event. West end entrance made more inviting.
Scythe Survey - collection given boost by interest and work of Mark Allery (pole lathe turner, demonstrator, scything tutor and national English scythe champion). Now have much improved detail descriptions and identifications and discovery of particularly rare example manufactured by Fussells of Somerset.
New Acquisitions:
Petworth Shoes - from Petworth Cottage Museum, had been concealed within \\
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Friends' news / Day trips; fund-raising events; Committee changes - Margaret Ashdown stood down. Helen Bailie joined; Honorary membership conferred on Alan wood and Margaret & Ray Ashdown (outlines of their contributions to the museum). Membership matters.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Medicine and mortality across the centuries / Weekend of talks and activities held in September. Talks chaired by Danae Tankard. 100 attended. Speakers included Clare Gittings, Dr Ian Mortimer, Dr Helen Frisby, Natasha Powers, Prof. Owen Davies. Displays and herbal demonstrations around the site - The Tudor Group, herbalist Christina Stapley, Worshipful Company of Plumbers, and museum interpretation team. Curatorial team held special display in the artefact store. Author Jane Borodale gave fireside reading in house from Walderton. NB: Museum Library also open all weekend with special display.
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Monument Fellowship programme helps museum retain knowledge / Application to the Museums Association Monument Fellowship. Purpose: to enable retired collections specialists to share unrecorded collections knowledge with former colleagues, their successors and the wider museum community. Funding from the Monument Trust. With Roger Champion, shared detailed knowledge with Joe Thompson: recorded conversations, photographs and sketches assembled into digital output. Technical details and comparative significance of the buildings and methods used in their conservation. Museum founder Dr Roy Armstrong's photographs are key part of archive on the buildings. Include files of negatives - now indexed. For the future: CDs and DVDs on which the conversations, videos, photos and sketches will be digitally recorded; seminars with the museum's staff and volunteers. RH reported to conference of the European Association of Open Air Museums in Bavaria in August and proposed a working seminar for members on the subject \\
2013/10Magazine / Autumn 2013Who runs the museum? / Museum run by Trustees who are the governing body of the charity, responsible for controlling its management and administration and for appointing its director (or chief executive). Volunteers, receiving no payment, who work together as a team with collective responsibility . Have legal responsibilities and duties of prudence and care. Currently 17 Trustee, who meet at least twice a year, and appoint an Executive Board of seven members who meet at least every other month with the Museum Director. Figureheads: three vice presidents: Duke of Richmond; Lord Lieutenant Susan Pyper; Diana Zeuner. Income: self-funding
2012/3Magazine / Spring 2012Interpreting the Beeding Toll House / The toll house was built in 1810 to house the toll collector who operated the Beeding turnpike gate. Originally it would have looked much as it does in the museum, a single-storey two-roomed building with a brick chimney and tiled roof. In 1967 the toll house was badly damaged by a lorry. Facing demolition it was dismantled and re-erected in time for the museum's opening in September 1970. After several changes of use, the Interpretation team, in 2010, began to discuss a revised interpretation scheme. It was decided that the house should be furnished to a date around 1815, a date being closer to the building's construction date and also a date that is not well-represented by the museum's other exhibits. The furnishing scheme is very simple. The outer room is the living room and the inner room is the bedroom. The furniture and utensils that the museum visitor now sees are a mixture of original and reproduction pieces. Toll collectors needed to be literate so that they \\
2012/3Magazine / Spring 2012Friends Events for 2012 / Day trip to Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire on Tuesday 15th May. Ticket price
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