HRH The Duke of Gloucester to officially open Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery
HRH The Duke of Gloucester will officially open Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery on Thursday 17 September 2015.
The new Museum & Art Gallery re-opened in the former Music Hall and 13th Century Vaughan’s Mansion on 1 April 2014 and welcomed more than 80,000 visitors in its first year.
During his visit, The Duke will meet Museum staff, councillors and local dignitaries, before taking a guided tour of the Museum & Art Gallery.
Owned and managed by Shropshire Council, the new Museum & Art Gallery is the result of a ground-breaking restoration project that cost more than £10m and saw two buildings – Shrewsbury’s Victorian Music Hall and the 13th century Vaughan’s Mansion – renovated and restored to create a vast new museum and spectacular gallery space.
Since it opened, the newly refurbished Museum has run a varied temporary exhibitions programme from contemporary art and international photography to the current ‘Archaeopteryx’ dinosaur display and forthcoming ‘Brick City’ LEGO® exhibition.
The building is also being used for a vast range of meetings, events, music and social gatherings, contributing to the development of a successful Cultural Quarter in the county town.
In June 2015 Shropshire law firm Lanyon Bowdler became the first corporate sponsors of Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery.
Tina Woodward, Shropshire Council’s deputy Cabinet member responsible for museums, said:
“I’m delighted that HRH The Duke of Gloucester will be officially opening Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery, and that we will have the opportunity to show him around this fabulous new facility, which is really putting Shrewsbury and Shropshire on the visitor map.
“The Museum and Art Gallery has proved to be extremely popular with visitors from near and far since it opened its doors to the public last year, and our dedicated team of staff and volunteers have worked hard to bring in new activities, events and exhibitions that keep our local residents, businesses and visitors from around the world coming through the doors.”
For more information about Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery visit www.shrewsburymuseum.org.uk or follow @shrewsmuseum on twitter.
Visitors to the Museum & Art Gallery will go on a journey of discovery starting in the time when mammoths roamed, unlocking stories from across the entire county of Shropshire; stories of discovery and engineering creativity that influenced the world. The entire collection has been reimagined for a modern audience, with exhibitions exploring subjects from geology to natural history via art, archaeology and costume.
The Museum holds some of the nation’s most treasured Roman artefacts, including an ornate silver mirror discovered at nearby Wroxeter, one of only a handful still existing from the period. The Medieval galleries explore the development of castles, abbeys and towns in Shropshire. The Civil War period gallery highlights visits by King Charles I to the county with a grim reminder of his execution.
In the Shropshire Gallery there are many special exhibits including an area about scientist Charles Darwin, who was born and educated in Shrewsbury, as well as his contemporaries such as Henry Blunt, who mapped the moon.
The links between the special geology of Shropshire and its famed ceramics industry see wonderful fossils displayed close to a collection of richly illustrated examples from the Caughley porcelain factory, which was once located near Broseley.