I have been carrying out the role of Learning and Liaison officer for Crawley Museum over the last 12 months. This involves working on learning activities as well as liaising with members of Crawley’s communities. As part of my work I have run outreach sessions for schools, and have also drawn up the education session summaries for the sessions at the new museum when it opens. I am now working on activity sheets and am developing plans for a range of learning opportunities in the new museum, including children’s craft activities, preschool sessions, and adult learning opportunities. I am fortunate to have a dedicated group of volunteers who are interested in helping with this, and we recently held a very interesting workshop on family learning. Some of the volunteers have also helped me with running stands at community events. These have included Armed Forces Day, the Crawley Big Seven-0 and the vintage picnics at Worth Park. We took along a selection of old photos of Crawley, and people really enjoyed looking at them and sharing their memories.
I have enjoyed getting to know a number of the local groups in Crawley and talking to them about ideas for temporary exhibitions and activities at the museum. This has included working with the Refugees Welcome Group on their community quilt project on happy memories, which will be displayed in the new museum. Other groups have included the Gurjar Hindu Union, the Polish Saturday School, the Crawley Campaign against Racism and the Crawley Inter-Faith Forum. I have represented the museum at events run by the CHAGOS (Cultural Heritage Across Generations) project which is led by social anthropologists from Edinburgh University, and have met with Raminder Kaur, who is planning to hold an exhibition based on her play Silent Sisters (about the partition of India) at the new museum. I have also worked with Southgate Forum, helping them to organise a community exhibition of photos of Southgate.
I’m very much looking forward to working more with people from all over Crawley in the coming year. If you know of any groups who would be interested in working with us please get in touch!
Andrea Dumbrell, Learning and Liaison Officer