Director’s Blog – June 2021

We started this month with a bang thanks to our Community Open Weekend. After what has been a tricky year for everyone, we wanted the opportunity to give something back to our local community. We welcomed more than double the number of people we would get in a normal weekend. We were delighted to be shared by the fabulous Tiggy & co from AndCircus, who kept the spirit of the Thames Tunnel Fancy Fairs alive with their Circus workshops

It’s been a month of change at the Brunel Museum. We said goodbye to two members of staff at the beginning of the month, and welcome two new team members.  On a personal level, I also managed to get some time away. I have personally relished the opportunity to explore more of what Britain has to offer, and a weeks camping in the Lake District did not disappoint in that regard. Since getting back, I’ve made sure to say a big public thank you to all the amazing places we visited, as I know from our experience at the Brunel Museum how much those positive reviews mean. We’ve been delighted to receive so many 5* reviews since reopening and we read every single one!

We’re coming to the end of our Cultural Recovery Fund, which has been a huge lifeline for the Museum. Thanks to the Arts Council, not only could we reopen as soon as Museums were allowed to, but we have continued to deliver projects to engage people with the amazing collections and stories of the Brunel Museum. The delay to lockdown easing has meant that we had to make some changes very last minute to our Kerchief project with Southwark Young Parents, but I’m delighted that this project will be going ahead with the first ‘bubble’ of parents next Monday at the Fashion and Textile Museum. Thanks so much to Kate at Southwark Young Parents Group, Charlotte at the Fashion and Textile Museum and Donna at Bosco college for their adaptability.

There is a real sense that things are getting back to normal, as we welcome our first school group back this week, with two more booked in before the end of term. There’s still time to book your end of term visit with us. You can have a self guided visit to the Museum, or book one of our character actors, and have your class meet one of a number of characters involved in building the tunnel. We’re also taking bookings for Autumn term onwards, so do get in touch.

We’re also still looking for 3 new Trustees to join our Board. If you think this could be you, please take a look.