Saturday, 31 March 2012

Asa Briggs lecture cancelled

We regret to say that today's lecture by Asa Briggs has been cancelled due to illness. We will be contacting those who have bought tickets about refunds. We wish Lord Briggs a speedy recovery.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Easter Holiday Activities

Looking for something to do with the children over the Easter school holidays? A number of craft based workshops are taking place at the Museum:

Come along and decorate china plates with spring designs and other Easter themed craft activities on either Tuesday 3 April (for under 8s) or Wednesday 4 April (over 8s).

On Easter Monday (9 April) the whole family can come in and have a go at some spring craft activities - Butterflies, Bugs and Spring Flowers. The drop in session runs from noon to 3.30pm.

There is a very different theme for the final workshop of the school holidays on Friday 13 April - Portraits from the Past is an opportunity to create textile portraits based on characters from history.

More information, including workshop times and charges can be found on our website - or click on the links above.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

BRITAIN'S COLD WAR: a Disappearing Legacy

A series of evening talks by Bob Clarke, who has been researching the subject for many years. He will explore the continuing legacy of the Cold War, through its monuments, social footprint and argue we should be identifying representative sites now if we are to adequately demonstrate teh 20th century to a 21st century audience - even the recent past matters!

Evening classes start on Wednesday 18 April and run for 6 weeks. There will also be two Saturday outings. More information on our website. Advance booking is essential as places are limited.

Monday, 5 March 2012

Fundraising Lecture by Lord Asa Briggs

History and its Neighbours on Saturday 31 March at 2.30pm.

Professor Lord Briggs (Asa Briggs), is perhaps the best-known living historian in Britain and he is giving this fundraising lecture for the Wiltshire Heritage Museum. He gives this description of his lecture:

Historians of all kinds are concerned with perspectives. How and why do they change? In my lecture I will draw on my own experience inside and, just as important, outside universities. I shall also draw on some of the remarkale experiences of your remarkable Society* founded in 1853. I have been as deeply interested in the relationship between local, national and global history as your Society has. I have deliberately chosen the same title for this lecture as I chose for my inaugural lecture as Professor of History at Leeds University in 1955.

Lord Briggs was formerly Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sussex and Chancellor of the Open University. He is a renowned historian and one of the most respected to write on the Victorian era.

*The Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society, which owns and adminsters the Wiltshire Heritage Museum, was formed in 1853.

Tickets cost just £10 and you will be helping us to continue to maintain the nationally important collections we hold. We are an independent charity and only 10% of our income comes from public funding. We face an annual deficit in excess of £50,000.

The lecture will be at Devizes Town Hall and tickets can be purchased online, or by contacting the Bookings Secretary on 01380 727369.

The Amesbury Archer - an evening lecture

7pm - Wednesday 14 March: another opportunity to hear this excellent lecture by Andrew Fitzpatrick of Wessex Archaeology. Early booking recommended.

Just a few miles from Stonehenge the graves of the Amesbury Archer and the Boscombe Bowmen date to the 24th century BC and are two of the earliest Bell Beaker graves in Britain.

The Boscombe Bowmen grave contained the collective burial of five adult males, a teenager (probably also male) and one, possibly two, children, together with objects made of flint (including a group of finely made arrowheads), seven Beakers, an antler pendant and a boars’ tusk. The Amesbury Archer was the single burial of a 35-45 year old man, who had lived with impaired mobility because of the absence of his left knee cap. The grave contained an unusually large number and variety of objects, including Beakers, several caches of flint, barbed and tanged arrowheads, bracers, copper knives/daggers, a pair of gold basket ornaments, boar’s tusks and a stone tool for metalworking. A third grave, the so-called ‘Companion’, was found close to that of the Amesbury Archer and was that of a 20-25 year old man. A rare trait in their feet shows that the two men were related.

Andrew Fitzpatrick is head of communications at Wessex Archaeology and leads the Public Engagement Team, responsible for disseminating the company’s archaeological results to as wide an audience as possible. He is a respected authority on Roman and early prehistoric Europe, as well as being one of the country’s leading authorities on the integration of archaeology in highways schemes. He is the author of the recently published Amesbury Archer and the Boscombe Bowmen: Bell Beaker burials at Boscombe Down, Amesbury, Wiltshire (Wessex Archaeology, 2011).

Booking available online or by contacting the Bookings Secretary on 01380 727369.