Object of the Week – Crocheted Christmas Decoration

November 25th, 2015

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The museum Christmas tree has been decorated by a set of these beautiful crocheted ladies for as long as anyone here can remember! This year, inspired by these ladies, we asked our Knit & Natter group to create more decorations for us and they’ve done a great job! We have knitted decorations, crocheted baubles, a beautiful handmade sequin covered bauble and our staff have been making a host of pom poms to add to the fun!

We’re still adding to the tree but if you come to our evening of Christmas Magic on Friday 27th November you’ll be able to see the completed tree! We’re going to be open from 4 – 8pm with FREE Christmas crafts, carol singing from St Andrews Church Choir and a visit from Father Christmas himself!

You can download a copy of our timetable for the evening by clicking on the picture below. Everything is free except the visit to Father Christmas’ Grotto which is £2.50 per child.

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Object of the Week: First World War Munitions Clerk Tunic

November 11th, 2015

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If you’ve (re)visited our exhibition From Bull Plain to the Battlefields you might have seen that we have a new object on display! Whilst documenting all of the research we’ve been doing for our First World war activities, exhibition and events we discovered that we had a Munitons Clerk Tunic that had previously been recorded in our catalogue without a date. When we checked the tunic we discovered it still has its original label with the date of manufacture!

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This tunic was made in 1917 by Cohen & Wilkes of Manchester for women working in Royal Ordnance Factories. We believe our tunic was never worn but it was destined for the small munitions factory at Enfield. You can find out all about life for a munitions worker on the Imperial War Museum’s website.

And whilst you’re looking at that website why not take a look at our new website as well! It’s full of information and pictures from our exhibition From Bull Plain to the Battlefields as well as a brief history of the Hertfordshire Regiment and lots of helpful links if you’re researching the First World War or a specific soldier!

http://www.hertfordshireregimentmuseum.org

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If you haven’t booked tickets for tonight’s Evening of Remembrance at Hertford Theatre but would like to come and hear stories from Hertfordshire Regiment soldiers in their own words then don’t worry- there will be tickets available on the door!

The evening starts at 7.30pm and tickets cost £15 (free to veterans and armed services personnel.

£5 from every ticket sold will go to the British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

The Hertford Zeppelin Raid – 13th October 1915

October 13th, 2015

Zeppelin L15 landing at its base in Nordholz- the Zeppelin that attacked Hertford was of the same type

On night of the 13th October 1915, England experienced one of the worst air raids of the First World War, when five German Zeppelins flew in formation with the intention of bombing London. One of the Zeppelin commanders, Oberleutnant-zur-See Werner Peterson, became lost and, mistaking the curve of the river Lea for the Thames, dropped 48 incendiary and explosive bombs on Hertford.

Annie Swan lived in North House on North Road and described the raid in her book “My Life”

I find it difficult to describe that appalling five minutes’ interlude, while the monster ship with its death-dealing cargo passed slowly over our town, visiting us last and dropping eight bombs on our house and garden. The first of the bombs had destroyed the power station, so that the town was plunged in utter darkness. There were lights from the sky, however, as the incendiary bombs rapidly followed the explosive ones to complete the devilish work.

I had the feeling that it was the Day of Judgement, as we stood there, holding on to one another.

Presently the great monster sailed over us, so low down that it brushed the topmost branches of the old cedar tree on the lawn.

HETFM6036.210 27 and 29 Bull Plain after the Zeppelin raid 13.10.1915 with RT Andrews, founder of Hertford Museum

Bombs landed on the Folly, in Bull Plain outside Lombard House, near Old Cross and along North Road where iron railings were sent flying through the windows of Hertford County Hospital.

Nine people were killed in the zeppelin attack on Hertford. Seven working men, one soldier and a four year old boy. Unusually their names are all listed on the Hertford War Memorial.

The Hertford War Memorial showing the names of those killed in the Zeppelin Raid

James L Gregory, 55, organist of All Saints and professor of music
Ernest Thomas Jolly, 27, bank cashier
John Henry Jevons, 67, Borough Surveyor of Hertford
George Cartledge, 56, linen draper
Charles Waller, 43, labourer
Arthur Hart, 51, labourer
George Stephen Game, 4
Charles Spicer, 30, labourer
Arthur James Cox of Yarmouth, bombardier in the Norfolk Regiment, stationed in Hertford.

If you’d like to learn more about the Zeppelin raid and Hertford during the First World War then visit our exhibition From Bull Plain to the Battlefields or pick up a copy of the accompanying book!

Hertford Sounds

October 7th, 2015

As part of our Beautiful Noise exhibition we asked all our visitors what the last song (or piece of music!) they had listened too. Now that our new exhibition is up and running we’ve had time to look at all your responses!

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The most popular artist was Taylor Swift with Meghan Trainor in second place. We also had multiple entries for John Shuttleworth, Katie Perry, The Beatles and songs from Disney’s Aladdin.

A lot of our visitors are families so we had songs from Peppa Pig and Maisie Mouse but there’s a real mix of styles on the list from local artists like History of Guns and The McTells to George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue!

You can take a look at the complete list as a pdf here.

This week’s events

Our First World War exhibition From Bull Plain to the Battlefields is now open. Come and lear about the Hertfordshire Regiment’s battles and what life was like on the Home Front in Hertford between 1914 – 1918.

Thursday 8th October is our next Knit & Natter meeting. Bring your knitting or crochet project and drop in from 10.30am for tea and friendly company!

Hertford Country Market will NOT be at the museum this Friday but don’t worry- if you want to pick up your usual goodies they will be outside Waitrose on SATURDAY.

Object of the Week- St Leonards, Bengeo by E.A. Brown

August 5th, 2015

This beautiful oil painting of St Leonard’s Church in Bengeo is the most recent addition to our collections. It was given to us following the death of its owner Joan Norris and joins several other paintings in our collection by local artist E.A. Brown.

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The church of St Leonards dates from about 1120 and is built using local stone and flint with a tiled roof and contains the remains of medieval wall paintings which were rediscovered during restoration work in 1938. If you have a chance make sure to visit one of the oldest buildings in Hertford!

This week’s events

This Saturday’s Gallery Sounds performer is local singer & guitarist James Nighthawk. Drop in between 2.30-3.00pm to hear him play in our exhibition space. The full list of musicians taking part can be found here.

Calling all model makers! We are looking for individuals or groups to be part of our World in Miniature event this December! If you think you can help us then contact us on 01992 582686 to find out more.

We’re two weeks into our Summer Holiday Activities and so far we’ve made musical instruments and dinosaurs! Next week you can have a go at making an axe head and/or a brooch! Full details on our website or download our flyer.

Object of the week: Tony Crowley’s One Man Band

July 29th, 2015

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One of the most popular things in our Beautiful Noise exhibition, especially with our younger visitors, is this wonderful one man band which owned by local musician Tony Crowley.

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Tony Crowley, who lived in Hertford from 1966, hand built his instrument and held the Guinness World Record for the longest continuous session of playing a one man band! He played other unusual instruments too, in this short video you can see him playing his phonofiddle.

This week’s events

There are still a couple of spaces left on our songwriting workshops tomorrow! It’s for children aged 8+ and they will be working with Ben from MusicLab to write their own original song! Call the museum to reserve your space.

This Saturday our Gallery Sounds series of mini-concerts continues with local singer and guitarist Mike Excell. Drop in between 2.30-3.00pm to hear him play in our exhibition space. The full list of musicians taking part can be found here.

If you haven’t checked out our Summer Holiday Activities then make sure you take a look on our website or download our flyer for full details. Next week we’re going fossil and dinosaur crazy!

Object of the week: Bandsman’s uniform

July 8th, 2015

It’s just three days till our new exhibition, Beautiful Noise opens so here’s a sneak peak at one of the wonderful objects on display!

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This bandsman’s uniform was worn by Dennis Levey when he was a memberof the Hertford Brass Band. The band played from 1949 through to the early 1970s when it was sadly closed due to a lack of funding. Many members moved across to the Ware Brass Band who are still playing today!

This week’s events

Beautiful Noise: Hertford’s Musical Heritage opens this Saturday with the first of our Gallery Sounds series of min-concerts! The first performer’s are a small group from the Hertford Choral Society who will be performing from 2.30-3.00pm in our exhibition space (or in the garden if the weather allows!) Watch this space for future artists.

If you want to learn more about Hertford’s Musical Pioneers then Jean Purkis’ talk on Thomas Green and Charles Bridgeman is a wonderful chance to discover two of Hertford’s first music promoters and pioneers of performance. Enjoy a glass of wine and the opportunity to take in our Beautiful Noise exhibition after hours. The talk will start at 8pm. Please call the museum to book your place!

Finally, if craft rather than music is your thing, it’s our last Knit & Natter before the summer holidays tomorrow. Drop in 10.30 – 12.30 for a cup of tea and a chat whilst you work on your knitting or crochet projects!

Object of the Week: The Andrews family on the beach

July 1st, 2015

With the temperatures high as they are today we tough the perfect picture for this week’s object of the week would be one of R.T. Andrews, one of our founders, and his family sitting on the beach!

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The Andrews family left a large collection of glass plate negatives to the museum including several of their family holidays to the coast. The children in these pictures are R.T Andrews’ grandchildren Nellie and baby Leslie with their mother Gussie and their father H.C. Andrews who later took over the museum from his father. Nellie is the start of one of our most popular School Workshops- Nellie’s Toy Box

Andrews Family Holidays - Family Beach Scene.

This week’s events

It’s Stay and Play Saturday this weekend and as it’s the 4th of July our craft activity will have a red, white and blue theme! Drop in 10.30am-4.30pm to have a go and also play with our traditional toys and books.

We said a sad goodbye to Connie Taylor or Finance Officer this week. Connie has been with the museum for over 13 years so she will be much missed (though she’s still going to be selling her delicious cakes & biscuits at the Hertford Country Market every Friday!)

Do you know any musicians, bands or other small music groups who might like a chance to perform at the museum? This summer we’re running a programme of short 30 minutes Gallery Sounds on Saturday afternoons and we’re looking for some more musicians to take part. Drop us an email at hertfordmuseum@btconnect.com for more details (all musical styles are welcome but we’re looking for small, acoustic groups to fit in our gallery!)

Object of the week: Saxon Disc Brooch (Watton at Stone)

June 24th, 2015

Although our Watton at Stone exhibition closes this weekend this beautiful 7th century Saxon disc brooch is on permanent display in our Timeline case (upstairs and turn left!).

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It was found by a metal detectorist prior to the construction of the Watton bypass, as Tony Rook remembers:

I said to him, where was it he found it and he said “Oh it was over there somewhere”, waving in the direction of the farm, so we’ve no idea where he actually found it and I said, “Well why didn’t you mark it?” And he said, “Well I didn’t think you were interested, I thought you were only interested in coins!” So that’s a bit frustrating there.

This week’s events

High Streets & Hedgerows: Watton at Stone his weekend so if you haven’t visited it yet (or want to come again!) make sure you drop in by the 27th June. Thank you to all the residents of Watton at Stone who helped us pull the exhibition together and all those who have come in to see it already!

Check out our What’s On page or our updated newsletter for details of LOTS of special events coming up in the next few months from evening talks to family activities and including LOTS of music! There are still more details to come too so keep following us on social media and sign up to our mailing list for latest infomation!

Do you know any musicians, bands or other small music groups who might like a chance to perform at the museum? This summer we’re running a programme of short 30 minutes Gallery Sounds on Saturday afternoons and we’re looking for some more musicians to take part. Drop us an email at hertfordmuseum@btconnect.com for more details (all musical styles are welcome but we’re looking for small, acoustic groups to fit in our gallery!)

Object of the week: Model Railway set

June 19th, 2015

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Model Railway sets have always been popular toys and this beautiful tin signal box is part of a large collection of track, trains and scenery which was played with, and then given to the museum by, the great grandchildren of R.T. Andrews, one of Hertford Museum’s founders.

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Although this set isn’t on display at the moment you can come and see lots of model railway displays in the museum this weekend at our Model Railway Day. The sets will be on display in the Andrews Room this Saturday 20th June, 10.30am – 3.30pm and visiting them is complete free!

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This week’s events

There are just 10 days till our Watton at Stone exhibition closes so if you haven’t visited it yet (or want to come again!) make sure you drop in by the 27th June. Thank you to all the residents of Watton at Stone who helped us pull the exhibition together and all those who have come in to see it already!

Do you know any musicians, bands or other small music groups who might like a chance to perform at the museum? This summer we’re running a programme of short 30 minutes Gallery Sounds on Saturday afternoons and we’re looking for some more musicians to take part. Drop us an email at hertfordmuseum@btconnect.com for more details (all musical styles are welcome but we’re looking for small, acoustic groups to fit in our gallery!)

If you’re looking for some musical entertainment this weekend why not buy a ticket for Hertford Choral Society‘s summer concert. The Choral Society are one of our exhibition sponsors this summer and a small group of them will be performing for our first Gallery Sounds afternoon in the 11th July!