The Museum Miscellany

We are looking back about 6 weeks today – to the evening of 4th October 2014 – the evening of our Museum Miscellany. This is the evening when Rog, our curator, does one of his talks. Rog always says he can’t talk for all that long about any single subject which is why the idea of a miscellany developed. Talks are prepared, with many museum photos, on a variety of themes with some lasting about five minutes and others, perhaps twenty minutes or so. There’s something for everybody. This year, the First World War featured but the mood was lightened with Harry Hobbs shop adverts. There are always (this was the fifth miscellany) photo tours of the village and this year Rog only used photos given to the museum since the miscellany in 2013.

Rog always says the best part of the evening is the interval. ‘Our wonderful stewards’, he says, ‘have made delightful food using recipes we have in the museum. We literally get a taste of the past’.

We make the interval a bit longer than might be expected to allow plenty of time for people to eat, fill their glasses at the bar, and to chat. It makes it a wonderful social occasion.

The museum team are usually too busy to think of photographs but other folks manage some.

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The hall is set out and ready – except that more chairs were needed.

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An old gramophone is ready. The record is a very old one from the collection of Charlie Williams, formerly of Easterton. It pre-dates the First World War but is a piece of martial music to set the tone.

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Food begins to appear and is set out alongside the recipe that is used. There will always be items made to suit people with varying dietary requirements.

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The hall fills but there’s still time for a chat.

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And there’s Rog explaining something during the show.

We are lucky that we have such a fantastic hall. It is equipped with a superb sound system, a fantastic screen not to mention a bar and a kitchen. It is always warm enough. It’s a wonderful venue and heavily used. That turned out to be to our advantage on this occasion for we had arranged with users earlier in the day to leave the chairs in place.

Preparations are in hand for next year’s event – the date isn’t finalised yet but it’s likely to be at the start of October.

We’ll look forward to seeing even more of you there next year.

Postscript.

The Community Hall is a fantastic venue and centrally placed within Wiltshire. It’s ideal for Wiltshire wide gatherings and events. The Wiltshire Buildings Symposium is held in the hall each year and we open the museum during their lunch interval. This year (November 8th), the outcome was truly memorable with 76 generous visitors coming into our small cottage museum. It’s an example of the knock on effect that the hall can have – benefitting the wider community. It certainly made a great end to the open season for us.

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