Museum History
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 Date   Origin   Summary 
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Spring tour to Derbyshire 2006 / The 2006 trip to Derbyshire was organised by Keith and Beryl Bickmore, staying in the spa town of Buxton. Friday saw a visit to Haddon Hall followed by the afternoon exploring the village of Eyam. Saturday morning was at leisure and the afternoon saw a visit to Lea Gardens, Matlock, famous for its rhododendrons and azaleas. Sunday included a visit to Quarry bank Mill on styal Estate, near Manchester. The last full day was spent at Chatsworth House and Gardens, home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.
The return journey was broken by a stop at Geoff Hamilton's gardens at Barnsdale, used for BBC Gardeners World.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Friends News / Friends' 2007 Spring tour to County Durham 26 April - 1 May
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 20062006 - The year in pictures /
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Whatever happened to Gert and Daisy? / They were two lead sphinxes included in the early days of the Plumbing Exhibition and perhaps had rather tenuous relevance to our subject of traditonal vernacular buildings. They were moved in 1992 and installed in Alnwick garden, as they have an importanty link with Syon House, both estates being owned by the Percy family.
The sphinxes, each weighing a ton and known as the 'Lambeth Ladies' or 'Gert and Daisy' after the war time comdedy duo, are thought to be the ones on the Lace Gate at Syon House, installed by Robert Adam in the 1760's.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Volunteering at the Museum / The Museum has currently more than 400 people registered as volunteers, and the average age of female and male volunteers is 61.3 and 67.5 respectively. Many young volunteers also come along and have included students from Germany, students on the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme and local school children who come along to help during half terms.
Volunteers with disabilities come along with their carers and all these people make a valuable contribution to Museum life.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006To Estonia for a lifelong learning conference / Five years ago the European Association of Open Air Museums formed a sister organisation to focus on lifelong learning. LLOAM held its first meeting at Jamtli in Sweden in 2002, followed in 2004 by a meeting at Bokrijk in Belgium. '06 saw the venue at Tallinn and this was attended by Diana Rowsell and Richard Harris. There were 17 participants from 12 OAMs in 10 countries and exercises included presentations and role play. Our Museum is unusual in the wide range of courses we offer. Most other Museums nhave very little volunteer help to deliver courses, relying on paid staff, with their cost being Government funded.
We will host the LLOAM conference in 2008.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Restoration and the Gypsies / The Museum was asked to host the final of Restoration Village on 17 September 2007 and over this weekend we also held our celebration of Gypsy music and culture, Romani Roots.
To accommodate both events, Restoration Village took place in a Globe-like staging area in the Market Square and Romani Roots was centred around Bayleaf Farmhouse, with the field in front proving an excellent location for a circle of wagosn with cooking fires. There was flamenco music workshops in the Downland Gridshell and a new path was specially created with display boards guiding visitors through the thousand year timeline when the Gypsies travelled from India.
The BBC arrived on the Monday to build the set and their work climaxed in the live BBC 2 broadcast at 9pm on Sunday 17 Sept hosted by Gryff Rhys Jones with co-presenters Marianne Suhr and Ptolemy Dean. The audience consisted of 300 buildings supporters, 200 members of the public and a smattering of VIPs. The winning building was Chedham' \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Traditional brickwork / Gerard Lynch has been involved with the Museum since 1992, when he was invited to become a Museum tutor for traditionally constructed brickwork and lime mortars.
He served a traditional apprenticeship and excelled at the craft of bricklaying and gained silver and gold trowels. He specialised in the higher branches of the craft, such as 'cut and rubbed' and 'gauged work' and gained a Masters Degree in the Conservation of Historic Brickwork, a PhD in Historic Brickwork Technology and has published several books and papers.
He runs the following courses from the recently finished brick workshop; Introduction to gauged brickwork; Advanced gauged brickwork; Jointing and pointing of historic brickwork; Lime mortars for traditionally constructed brickwork; Historic development of English brickwork and its conservative repair; The repair of traditionally constructed brickwork.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Enjoy the Museum in Winter / Tree Dressing event 3 December 2006 from 12.30pm
Museum's annual carol evening in the House from North Cray 11 December 2006 from 7pm
A Sussex Christmas - 26 December 2006 until 1 January 2007 inclusive - visitors are invited to experience Christmas through the ages with the Museum's domestic dwellings decorated for Christmas.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Growing flax at the Museum / Long fibre flax is not grown commercially win the UK but was one of the crops grown within the strip field system by Chris Baldwin this year. It stands 24 inches tall and produces more long fibres for spinning. The crop is sown in April and was hoed three times to remove the weeds. To harvest the plants they are pulled up by hand and tied into bundles called beets. These are put into the 'retting' pond for 5-10 days to rot the outside fibres of the plant. They are then laid out on the grass to dry. To extract the fibres the stems are broken to release them from the central pith, then separated by being drawn over spikes. The outer material is course and can be used to make rope and the finer fibres are spun into linen thread for weaving
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006News in brief / Tudor Suppers, having been successfully run in Winkhurst kitchen and this year in Bayleaf farmhouse will now move on to a series of feast days, interpreting large scale cooking and Tudor dining during normal visitor hours, thereby reaching a greater number of people.
Interpretation moves on - now includes dairying in Pendean, laundry and washing in Bayleaf and specific focus on the woodland for the provision of fire wood for the domestic buildings. In Whittakers cottages the range is to be replaced and there will be a copper, mangle and flat irons in readiness for the new season.
Gordon Rushmer, the Petersfield artist with whom the Museum has had close contact over a number of years, is to curate an exhibition of images of Bayleaf Farmhouse during the 2007 season.
A Quality Assurance Audit was undertaken to test the University of Bournemouth's systems for communication and support with the Museum in connection with the MSc in Timber Building Conservation. The course first ran in 1994, a \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Obituaries / Peter Stock (volunteer) - died Feb 2006, miller who worked as a volunteer for more than 20 years.
Frank Knights (ex-staff) - aged 74 died suddenly at home following a stroke. He worked as assistant warden to Keith Bickmore between 1990 and 1998.
Jane Murgatroyd (Volunteer) - died from cancer in June 2006, she worked with her sister-in-law Charlotte since 1999 and were responsible for catalogueing material from the collections of the museum's founder Roay Armstrong as well as developing the library.
Rod Tuck (volunteer) - came from a Royal Navel background, quickly immersing himself in the history of the Museum as a volunteer, and was an excellent communicator.
Annie Keys (staff) worked at a volunteer in March 2003 and then joined the interpretation team in Sept 2004 working in Winkhurst Tudor kitchen, passed away in Sept 2006 of cancer.
Roy Money (volunteer) - died aged 82 having been a volunteer of 14 years. Worked mainly in 'getting to grips' exhibition, took farming tours and worked \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Boarhunt Hall House and its origins / The medieval hall house from Boarhunt has been tentatively dated to the late 14th century. When the house was rescued in 1971 it was in an advance state of decay and only 30% of the original timber survived. Reconstruction was considered worhtwhile since the building was small and simple and the remains were well distributed throughout the building.
Boarhunt lies on the northern slope of Portsdown, approx 4 miles north of Porchester. During the medieval period Boarhunt was divided into at least three manors, west Boarhunt, Boarhunt Herberd and Boarhunt Herbelyn, with a possible fourth manor of East Boarhunt. West Boarhunt was the principal manor.
In around 1190 the manor was given to Southwick Priory, a house of Augustine canons and in 1369 the Priory also acquired the neighbouring manors of Boarhunt Herberd and Herbelyn. The area around Boarhunt is classic 'woodland' characterised by a mixture of pasture, woods, arable and heaths. Woodland settlemenst tended to \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Collections update / Reed Comber - a transfer from Plymouth Museum, an acquisition from outside our collecting area but one which will be used specifically within the site. Located in redvins Yard.
Band saw - donated by Mr K White of Storrington in May 2006, a fine example which after conservation by Ben Headon is in good working order and will be transferred to the Woodyard for use alongside the treadle lathe, racksaw bench and timber crane.
Wheeled vehicles return to the site - Following the vacation of the storage area at Manor Farm, Singleton, many wheeled vehicles have made a welcome return to the Museum site, giving visitors, volunteers and staff the opportunity to see them. A rare and important Hop Waggon, used on the Whitbread Estate in Kent is now situated in the Charlwood Waggon Shed. A water carrier has also been restored by Ben Headon and will be available for transporting water for livestock and crops.
Mystery object - A glass display case in the Downland Gridshell houses new and unusual \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006Marjorie Hallam / Marjorie Hallam, who died at her home in Graffham, was one of the key figures in the establishment of the Museum, making an enormous contribution to the rescue and interpretation of some of the earliest buildings. She could be called the 'deputy founder' to Roy Armstrong, contributing vast amounts of time and energy to the project, particularly the social history of the Museum exhibits. She was involved in the establishment of the Museum's Library and responsible for cataloguing its huge collection of books, photographs and documents. She was appointed in 1991 as a vice president, a position she held until her death.
She was born on 11 November 1918 and was brought up in Ashbury. She studied botany in Exeter University and during WW2 ran courses for typists in telecommunications work in the South west and London. Whilst living in Lincolnshire she studied with Prof Maurice Barley and this sparked her interest in venacular architecture. In 1964 she joined Roy Armstrong and R T Mason in \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006St Margaret's Mission Church, South Wonston, Hampshire / In 1892 an area of poor quality farmland, on the chalk downland ridge at the southern end of the parish of Wonston, near Winchester, was sold for development, and so was born the village of South Wonston. This mission church of St. Margaret's was among the earliest buildings erected there, and became the hub of the growing community. The plot (80ft x 50ft) was purchased by Revd R F Bigg-Wither using his own money, in July of 1908, and cost
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006The Museum acquires a 'tin tabernacle' / During the summer of 2006 the Museum acquired a new exhibit building for re-erecting, the first for several years. It is a small pre-fabricated church, the type often referred to as a 'tin tabernacle'. Originally built in 1908, its site in South Wonston, Hampshire, was needed for redevelopment and the owners, the St Margaret's Mission Trust, offered it to us. The dismantling took three weeks and was carried out by Curator Julian Bell, and his team, Guy Viney and Ben Headon. Richard Harris did the measured drawings. Labels for 'Red Hand Inodorous Felt' were found which was the precursor of the modern bitumen-backed material. It was made by d Anderson of Manchester and the idea for the logo has its origins in Anderson's plant in Belfast, where it was known as the Red Hand of Ulster (in the middle of the Ulster flag).
The Museum intends to re-erect the building, subject to planning permission being obtained. It will be restored to its original state, the few late \\
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006The Museum moves forward on its Access Project / The Museum has submitted an application for outline planning permission for its proposed 'Access Project', first described in the Museum Magazine, Autumn 2004 issue. The aim is to impove the standard of the Museum's visitor services and there are two elements to the proposal:
A new visit centre containing reception, orientation, retail and restaurant facilities, the design brief to emphasise sustainability and landscape context.
New parking areas, carefully landscaped and screened on the flat land in the north west corner of the site, maintaining the existing vehicle entrance in Town Lane.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006New Museum films will reveal how agricultural machines worked / Latest Designation Challenge Fund two year Project began in April 2006, and involves producing short films showing the detailed setting-up and use of the Museum's horse-powered agricultural machinery. Three recent graduates from Portsmouth University, Tim Connell, James Allison and Oliver Turner have been employed to produce around 10 films covering the most significant generic implements used in ploughing, drilling and reaping.Three versions will be made, an on-site version for use in exhibitions and displays; a research version and an on-line version.
2006/11Magazine / Autumn 2006News in brief / Visitor numbers remain consistent with the past few years, mid-September saw 110,000 visitors which was 3% up on the past year. It suggests the Museum will continue the trend of a small but significant year on year growth.
The museum has acquired a new horse, a five year old Shire called Ace gelding, black with four white feet, standing 18 hands. Bred in Shropshire by Tim Breeze, he was broken for work by Jonathan Waterer of North Devon and will work alongside Neville carrying out seasonal tasks around the museum site.
A gala evening of Shakespeare took place at the Museum, presented by 'The Company Presents', an outdoor theatre company associated with Arundel Festival.
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