20: Taz’s tiles

Those of you who follow our Facebook page will already know that this week we took some of our volunteers to see how work is progressing on the terracotta tile frieze that will run around the outside of our new wing. This is ceramic artist Taz Pollard demonstrating the amount of energy needed to fill … Continue reading 20: Taz’s tiles

19: On bricks and bricklaying

This week saw a significant milestone in our build - the laying of the first brick.  We were delighted that Keith Abraham was able to come along and do this for us, using a silver trowel he found in his collection.  We will get the trowel engraved to mark the occasion. https://www.northdevongazette.co.uk/news/museum-extension-first-brick-1-5768956 Now work is … Continue reading 19: On bricks and bricklaying

17: On Hillforts and other community projects…

Last week, on the same day that work started on the steel for our new extension, I attended North Devon Archaeological Society's latest talk.  The subject was "Iron Age Devon and its Hillforts".  The Speaker was Henrietta Quinnell, Honorary Fellow of the University of Exeter and acknowledged doyenne of all things prehistoric in the South West … Continue reading 17: On Hillforts and other community projects…

9: Bigger and better Exhibitions?

One of the things our extension project will be delivering is new temporary exhibitions galleries.  Our two new spaces measure 69 square metres (main gallery) and 31 square metres (community gallery).  They will also have the necessary temperature and humidity controls to enable us to borrow things from other museums around the country.  We have … Continue reading 9: Bigger and better Exhibitions?

7: A Barnstaple Benefactor

This week I have been occupied in celebrating the 90th birthday of Keith Abraham, one of the museum's staunchest, and most generous supporters.  Keith is following in the footsteps of our founder, William Frederick Rock  in his generosity to the people of Barnstaple. Keith Noel Abraham was born in Hedge End, on the outskirts of … Continue reading 7: A Barnstaple Benefactor

6: Time for a Party!

Even though we are only 6 weeks into our building programme, this week marked the half way point for our Pop-Up museum. Sadie, our Activity Plan Programme Coordinator, organised a party for all the people who have contributed stories and information about our five themes for the new Social History Gallery and 45 people came … Continue reading 6: Time for a Party!

4: Dust, dust and more dust…

This week has seen more demolition, more stories and especially more dust.  The whole of the countryside is, of course, exceptionally dusty at the moment, and while we are busy in the pop-up cleaning ancient Athenaeum dust off some things, the builders are busy depositing more dust around the Museum itself. One of the first … Continue reading 4: Dust, dust and more dust…

3: You were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!

This week things really got moving!  Preparation had already taken place, mostly to create access to the building site area.  The builders have taken down a section of the listed garden railings and stored them for reinstatement later.  This means they can get bigger machines round the back of the museum building.     The … Continue reading 3: You were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!

2: It’s all about the volunteers

This is Sadie, our Activity Plan Programme Coordinator.  Sadie's job is to gather stories for the new Social History Gallery.  She has recruited new 14 Story Collecting volunteers - some repurposed from the old museum tea-room and shop, and some brand-new, and trained them up in collecting the stories that will be so important to … Continue reading 2: It’s all about the volunteers