Young library users and older readers had the opportunity to get ‘hands on’ with museum artefacts in Richmond this week (Thursday 5 December).
The Green Howards Museum is working with the library to host a festive-themed fun, rhyme and story-time session, as well as getting involved with a children’s book group to discuss the depiction of war in children’s literature.
‘Presents for Private Percy’ was aimed at children up to the age of ten. Alongside library stories about gifts, giving and the excitement of Christmas, the museum’s Community Liaison Officer, Virginia Arrowsmith, told youngsters about Princess Mary’s Christmas gift; showing them an original brass gift box presented to all soldiers in 1914, which forms part of The Green Howards Museum collection. Children also had the chance to create their own small Christmas gift as part of the session.
“It’s great to be able to bring objects from our collection out to groups, to help our understanding of how they featured in the everyday lives of real people, not just characters in history, or even in a book,” explains Liaison Officer, Virginia Arrowsmith, who is working with a variety of local groups to bring the museum’s collection out into the local community.
Members of Richmond Library’s Chatterbooks reading group for eight to 11 year olds, also had the chance to handle items from the museum collection during their ‘Christmas in the trenches’ session, discuss books about children and the First World War, and think about how they would describe being in the trenches away from family and loved ones at Christmas time.
The museum’s new community outreach programme is currently being developed, and has been made possible thanks to funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund. The Green Howards Museum is currently closed for redevelopment and will reopen next summer.