All the fun of a Victorian Fayre at the Dorset County Museum

The Victorian Fayre last year at the Dorset County Museum

The Victorian Fayre last year at the Dorset County Museum

On Sunday 21st February, from 2.00pm to 5.00pm, the Dorset County Museum opens its doors for the second year running to a traditional Victorian Fayre to celebrate the birthday of William Barnes, Dorset dialect poet. This FREE event will offer something for all the family.

Stalls will include traditional crafts and gifts and the chance to learn rural skills. There will be Maypole dancing for the children as well as popular parlour games.

The friends of the William Barnes Society and Tim Laycock, well-known folk musician, actor and storyteller will provide traditional singing, music, dance and poetry reading throughout the afternoon.

Frome Valley Morris Mummer

Frome Valley Morris Mummer

The Frome Valley Morris Men will perform the Mummers and Hoodening play. The event would not be complete without a raffle, quiz and a Victorian afternoon tea.

Marion Tait, Honorary Curator of the William Barnes Gallery and Archive said that last year the Victorian Fayre was a huge success and was hoping for a repeat performance.

For further information contact the Museum on on 01305 756827 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org or follow us on Facebook and Twitter

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Don’t miss our Egg-citing Dinosaur Egg Hunt and other Family Activities this Easter

Dinosaur Egg HuntDorset County Museum will be running two different events for children during Easter Holidays. Both are completely FREE thanks to generous sponsorship from Battens Solicitors.

On Wednesday 1st April discover about the burial customs from ancient times looking at how people were buried and what special objects were chosen to go into the grave. There will also be an opportunity on Wednesday 8th April to learn more about the famous horned Ooser mask displayed in the museum as well as have a go at making one. Both activities take place between 10.30am and 12.30pm and there’s no need to book.

To coincide with the Easter Holidays from Saturday 28th March to Saturday 18th April. Families will have the opportunity to enter ‘The Dinosaur Egg Hunt’ where children will be encouraged to find clues throughout the museum’s galleries for a chance to win some fabulous prizes.

Dinosaur Egg Hunt PrizesTo enter, a trail sheet can be purchased for £1 from the front desk; all proceeds will go towards the Museum Development Appeal. Once the questions to the answers are completed, the sheet can be handed back to the front desk. All correctly answered quiz sheets will have a chance to win prizes like the large chocolate dinosaur egg created by Angel Cake Company and the egg supplied by Waitrose. An animated wooden skeleton model of a Tyrannosaurus Rex donated by Wise Owl Toys and a Triceratops model donated by Louis Ormston. However everyone who enters will not leave empty handed as they will receive a small prize for participating.

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 756827 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org

William Barnes celebrated at Museum’s Victorian Fayre

Dorset County Museum Victorian FayreOn Sunday 22nd February 2015, the Dorset County Museum’s Victorian Hall was transformed into a traditional Victorian Fayre to celebrate the birthday of Dorset dialect poet William Barnes. The atmosphere was full of hustle and bustle with numerous stalls from traditional crafts to popular parlour games; Victorian paperboy selling his broadsheets and a demonstration of net making and other rural skills. The museum’s Tea Room worked flat out to provide Victorian afternoon tea for 350 visitors.

The Language of Flowers proved to be really popular with people queueing to create their own style Nosegays and Tussie Mussies with fresh flowers. Likewise the demonstration on creating Dorset Buttons saw very enthusiastic folk fashion their own design.

Net Making

Sue Worth of The New Hardy Players demonstrates Net Making

The Herb stall gave an informative look into culinary and medicinal uses of that period.
The fantastic display of hand-made bonnets drew quite a crowd as did the dining table which depicted the difference between the gentry and the rural labourers.

The children had their own entertainment including pin the tail on the donkey, making little peg dolls, a variety of toys to buy and dressing up in period costume.

Musician and Storyteller Tim Laycock captivated the audience of his portrayal of a teacher in a Victorian classroom. Whilst fellow members of the William Barnes Society and The New Hardy Players entertained all with music, song, poetry and country dancing which was enjoyed by people of all ages.

Alastair Simpson and the Cantate Rustique choir

Alastair Simpson and the Cantate Rustique Choir

Alastair Simpson conducted the Cantate Rustique choir to perform four pieces: Ralph Vaughan Williams’s famous Linden Lea; a setting of The Lew O’ the Rick by the blind organist of Shaftesbury, F. F. Coaker, from the 1950s; a 2002 work by Peter Lord, Come; and Alastair’s own harmonisation of the folk musician Tim Laycock’s touching melody to the words of Barnes’s grief-stricken poem The Wife a-Lost, the last being a premiere.

William Barnes Collection Curator, Marion Tait said “This was a hugely successful and amazing event where all had a great time at the Victorian Fayre raising over £600 towards the redevelopment of the museum’s William Barnes’ Gallery.”


 

A huge thank you to Battens Solicitors, Dorchester, for sponsoring the event and a special thank you to all volunteers who took part in the Victorian Fayre and celebrating William Barnes Birthday

  • Alastair Simpson and Cantate Rustique
  • Alistair Chisholm
  • Friends and family

Thank you to the following businesses for supporting the William Barnes Collection.

  • Dorset Flower Men, Dorchester Precinct
  • Bridget, Fruit and Vegetable stall, Dorchester market
  • Beth King, Tolpuddle

Spring holiday family fun at Dorset County Museum

Iron Age Round HouseHoliday Family activities continue to be FREE at Dorset County Museum thanks to generous sponsorship from Battens Solicitors.

The activity during spring half term is on Wednesday 18th February. Find out all about the amazing round houses that Iron Age people lived in on top of Maiden Castle and all over Dorset, then build your own model to take home. This takes place between 10.30am and 12.30pm and there’s no need to book.

At Easter the family activities focus on some of the burial customs from ancient times – looking at how people were buried and what special objects were chosen to go into the grave. There will also be an opportunity to find out more about the Museum’s famous horned Ooser.

Dorset County Museum welcomes families and has a range of family trails and plenty of activities for children in the galleries.

For further information please see www.dorsetcountymuseum.org or telephone 01305 262735.

Dates of Family Activities at the Dorset County Museum as follows:

  • 18th February: Make a Replica Iron Age Round House – 10.30am and 12.30pm
  • 1st April: Brilliant Burials and Skeletons – 10.30am and 12.30pm
  • 8th April: Make a Dorset Ooser Mask – 10.30am and 12.30pm

Upcoming Museum Events over Summer 2014

Dorset County MuseumFamily Activities

Family activities continue to be FREE at Dorset County Museum thanks to generous sponsorship from Battens Solicitors. There is an exciting programme for the Summer Holidays including:

  • 23rd July: Stone Age Art
  • 30th July: Make a Celtic Mirror
  • 6th August: Clone Henge!
  • 27th Aug: Brilliant Bronze Age

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org

Jurassic Fun

MegaLEGOsaurus

A recent addition to our Jurassic Coast Gallery is a large LEGO® model of a fierce Megalosaurus dinosaur. There are two LEGO®-based events, on 12th and 20th August, building a giant mosaic of a Megalosaurus out of LEGO® bricks. Aimed at children aged 5 – 10, spaces will be limited and every child will receive a brand new model made of LEGO® to put together at home. The cost is just £10 per child.

Young Archaeologists’ Club

Young Archaeologist Club Dorset County MuseumThe Young Archaeologists’ Club (YAC) is the only UK-wide club for young people interested in archaeology. The club is run by Council for British Archaeology (CBA), an educational charity working for over 65 years to promote ‘Archaeology for All’. YAC’s vision is for all young people to have opportunities to be inspired and excited by archaeology, and to empower them to help shape its future. A new Young Archaeologists’ Club (for ages 8 to 17) is being established at the Museum, running on the first Saturday of every month. 10.30am to 12.30pm. For ages 8 – 17. Book your place soon as numbers are limited.

  • To find out more about the Young Archaeologists’ Club and LEGO® events and to reserve your place, please phone Dorset County Museum on 01305 756827.

Half Term fun and games at Dorset County Museum

Hula Hooping

Hula Hooping – an image from the current exhibition, Free Time at the Dorset County Museum

Dorset County Museum is running a free family activity during half term week.
The theme is toys and games from the past and ties in with the new exhibition which has just opened at the Museum: Free Time.

Children and their families will be able to play with toys and games from the 50s, 60s and 70s like Flying Hats, Flips or Slam!  Learn how to work a hula hoop, do some simple juggling, or play a game of hopscotch.  There will also be a selection of traditional wooden toys, dolls and card games to try out. Come along, play some new games, learn new skills and have a lot of fun at the same time!

All family activities during 2014 are kindly sponsored by Battens Solicitors through their Charitable Trust and are FREE. The activity starts at 10.30am on Wednesday 19th February and runs for two hours. Everyone is welcome and parents and carers must stay with their children during the activities.

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org

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Half Term Fun at Dorset County Museum

Dinosaur Fun at the Dorset County Museum

Dinosaur Fun at the Dorset County Museum

Dorset County Museum will be running two different events for children during half term week.  Both are completely free thanks to generous sponsorship from Battens Solicitors through its Charitable Trust.

On Tuesday 19th February the brand new Dino Club has its first session. This club has been specially designed for children aged 7 and under and each session will have a different dinosaur as its theme.  This week’s dinosaur is the Megalosaurus – a Jurassic dinosaur up to 9m long which walked on two legs, and had sharp teeth and claws.  The activities will include making giant megalosaurus footprints.  Dino Club runs from 10.30am to 11.30am and only takes place in the school holidays.

On Wednesday 20th February there is a family activity from 10.30am to 12.00pm.  Everyone is welcome and the theme is ‘Five things you didn’t think you could do in a museum!’  These include making new labels for exhibits, rearranging a display case and dressing up some of the statues.  Both events are free, and there’s no need to book – just turn up on the day.

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org