Fort William in Scotland has the tagline: The Outdoor Capital of the UK and with Ben Nevis, and lochs and skiing and walking etc etc there sure is a lot of outdoors to explore.
The West Highland Museum is certainly worth a bit of time though, try it out while waiting for better weather or between browsing for yet more hiking gear. Having been there last year, I popped back in recently to distract myself from nerves before starting the Three Peaks Challenge (my colleagues shopped for boots, ate lunch and drank beer) Yes, I am quite a nerd...
The museum combines that wide collection of stuff and things that are the local museum's stock in trade, traditional homewares, crafts, war memorabilia, local history relics, Victorian costumes, stuffed animals... Yet the range is very broad, and by covering (of course) big themes in Scottish history and the Jacobites with such local and personal items, you get a real feel for how people dealt with these nationally discussed issues and conflict in everyday life.
David-Elliot Mumford, also an attendant, works at The Story Museum in Oxford. Where lo, as an attendant, he got a bit bored.
You'd imagine that a place devoted to children's literature and helping kids learn and develop through storytelling would be a 100% fun, interesting and exciting place all the time! Well, as in any workplace, time can go slow, and when it did, David went and created an amazing piece of art based on their current exhibition of art. Alice in Wonderland is pretty fertile ground, and the full piece is stunning!
If you like the art below, go and keep an eye on his blog and things.
You know that you occupy a strange niche when you get really upset about having deleted a photograph of the entrance foyer signs at the national Railway Museum York, and then email them asking if they can take a picture and send it to you.
So to clarify: at a museum dedicated to trains, and full of trainspotters, I got excited about high quality visitor signage and stopped to take pictures of it. Yup, nerd.
This weekend coming I'm hiking 25 miles over Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon, plus travelling, eating and trying to sleep, in under 30 hours. As an indicator of what the weather usually does, when we went up Scafell PIke as a practise walk someone uttered "My god, I can actually see it. I don't think I've ever seen Scafell before, just walked up and down it...". I doubt I'll get to enjoy the scenery we're walking through!
Trekking up three wopping hills is our way of being thankful that we're still fit and healthy, and in order to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support. If you fancy encouraging some nutters and helping a good cause, you can donate at http://www.justgiving.com/The-Sangria-Pact or just send a text to 70070 that reads PACT99 and then £5 or £10, or whatever your donation is.
"I'm sorry but it's really not fair on other visitors to close the door to the children's room and hold a private picnic birthday party. And it's a lovely cake, but your candles might set off the fire alarms. I'll give you a few minute, but you will need to pack up the food and let other children in."
"We all paid to come in here, so we'll pack up when we've finished. Thank you."
For some people, no amount of "no food" signs will ever register, as they continue to act as living examples that common sense really isn't that common.
P.S. The building has previously burnt down, so the attendant was, understandably, a bit twitchy about people having lit candles in a room full of dressing up clothes, soft toys and fake plants.
Incidentally, August means happy 2nd birthday to Attendants View!
Derby Museum and Art Gallery and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust have both been hit by different kinds of theft, one perhaps inside work, the other perhaps opportunistic.
Between 2 May and 19 July around 1,000 coins, medals and watches worth £53,000 were stolen from storage from Derby Museum and Art Gallery. There were no signs of a break in, so sadly the police are not ruling out inside knowledge as part of the theft.
Stolen items included:
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