Monday, 11 January 2010

Wiltshire museums join forces to tell story of Stonehenge

English Heritage, the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum, and the Wiltshire Heritage Museum have agreed to collaborate on presenting and interpreting the story of the Stonehenge World Heritage Site.

The two museums will make loans from their collections to English Heritage for display in the proposed new visitor centre, while English Heritage will assist the two museums with their own displays and enhancing their archives to support the co-ordinated approach.

For the first time, the proposed new visitor centre at Airman’s Corner would have dedicated exhibition space, opening up great opportunities for making the story of Stonehenge and its setting accessible and engaging for everyone, whatever their age and interests.

Recent discoveries and research will also add to the complexity and richness of the information to be presented and interpreted.

Loraine Knowles, Stonehenge Project Director at English Heritage, said: “The future exhibition at the proposed new visitor centre will be part of an overall experience that will draw on all the senses and lead people to a greater understanding not just of Stonehenge but the generation of the people who built it.

"The knowledge and collections that local museums can contribute to creating this experience is considerable and I am very pleased that we are working together.”

Adrian Green, director of the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with English Heritage and Wiltshire Heritage Museum.

"We look forward to supporting the development of the visitor centre, and also redisplaying our own nationally important collections from the World Heritage Site to complement the new exhibition at Stonehenge.”

David Dawson, director of the Wiltshire Heritage Museum in Devizes, said: “This is an exciting development that means that together we can present the full story of Stonehenge, and encourage visitors to explore Wiltshire.”