Museum could be ‘gannin’ oot’ to rural villages

Bailiffgate Museum, Alnwick.
Bailiffgate Museum, Alnwick.

Creating an exhibition which can be taken out on the road to the outlying rural villages is being looked at by Alnwick’s museum for its next project.

Jane Mann, from Bailiffgate Museum, was the guest speaker at last Thursday’s meeting of Alnwick Town Council.

She told members that since the museum’s last major Heritage Lottery Fund grant came to an end in December 2015, the focus had been on transitional grants for smaller projects.

However, for its next major bid, the team is now looking at the idea of taking the museum ‘oot’ into the district, creating an exhibition that can be taken to the likes of Whittingham and Rothbury.

In other updates, a new website is coming, further work has been carried out on the building and there has been a continued focus on financial sustainability through events and exhibitions – making sure that the museum is not somewhere people visit once only.

The next major exhibition to open is Illustrating Harry Potter, which begins in March and features the original illustrations and sketches that have been produced for new versions of the world-famous series of books about the boy wizard.

Reliant on team of volunteers

The Bailiffgate is fully independent and not publicly-funded, but still meets the same standards as the likes of the British Museum.

Apart from a part-time admin role and a cleaner who works five hours a week, everything else at the museum, from front-of-house to high-level finance posts are held by volunteers.

Jane said the trustees and volunteers are grateful for the town council’s support, while Mayor Alan Symmonds thanked the museum team for its efforts.