News In Brief- Week Ending July 23 2006

By 24 Hour Museum Staff | 17 July 2006
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  • Archived article

Welcome to the 24 Hour Museum news in brief page for the week ending July 23 2006.

a photograph of the exterior of the British Library

21.07.2006 - British Library Annual Report Reveals 96% Customer Satisfaction

The British Library has won an award from the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy for its Annual Report and strategy ‘Redefining the Library’ for the second year running.

The report highlighted results of a survey that revealed that 96% of readers using the British Library Reading Rooms rated the services and facilities as ‘excellent’ or ‘good'.

In addition, visits to the Reading Rooms are up 17% and the number of items supplied and consulted was up by over 11% on the previous year. A MORI poll also recorded that 75% of Britons are aware of their national library and its role, an increase from 50% five years ago.

The report also revealed how the British Library’s exhibition and events programme has also increased awareness, with visitor numbers growing by 3.6% during a period when most visitor attractions in London saw visitor numbers fall.

Read the full British Library Annual Report 2005/6 at

21.07.2006 - Restored Concorde To Go On Display At Brooklands Aviation Museum

A restored Concorde is to go on display at Brooklands Aviation & Motor Museum in Surrey next month.

After boarding the plane, visitors will get the chance to experience a virtual flight via a specially-produced audio and video programme showing on screens and speakers.

The exhibition, which opens on August 1 2006, will also tell the story of Concorde and show some fascinating items such as a test pilot's pressure helmet.

a photograph of a landscape with circular linked earthworks visible

20.07.2006 - Tarmac Submit Revised Proposal For Quarrying Near Thornborough Henges

Construction company Tarmac has submitted a revised application to North Yorkshire County Council to quarry at the Ladybridge Farm site, near to the neolithic Thornborough Henges.

Similar proposals were rejected by a council committee in February 2006 after a sustained campaign by pressure groups and English Heritage. The latest proposal reduces the proposed area for sand and gravel extraction from 45 hectares to 31 hectares and avoids the south west section of the site to address concerns raised about archaeology.

“Having listened carefully to the comments made by councillors... and following subsequent discussions with officers of the county council and English Heritage, we hope that the revised application offers a way forward for all parties," said Tarmac estates manager Bob Nicholson.

20.07.2006 - Ministers Welcome Nurturing Creativity In Young People Report

A report has been published outlining steps the Government should take to encourage creativity in young people. Nurturing Creativity in Young People, commissioned by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Education and Skills, follows an independent review.

Among the areas examined are the role of partnerships between schools and the creative and cultural sectors, the possible development of a creative portfolio to celebrate each young person's creative achievements and making clearer pathways into creative industries for young people. The Government will publish a response and action plan in response this autumn.

Culture ministers David Lammy and Shaun Woodward, and DfES minister Andrew Adonis welcomed the report at the Creative Economy Programme's Education and Skills breakfast, held at the Design Council on July 19.

"Our creative industries are internationally renowned and amongst the fastest growing sectors of our economy," said Shaun Woodward, Minister for the Creative Industries. "But it is clear that all businesses will require a future work force with the ability to think creatively and this report is a significant step towards ensuring that our young people develop such skills."

a painting showing a boy leading a horse with a bay visible in the background

20.07.2006 - Grants Save Stanhope Forbes Painting For Penlee Museum

Penlee House Gallery & Museum, Penzance, has acquired a major painting by leading Newlyn School artist Stanhope Forbes at auction after a £40,000 grant from The Art Fund.

The painting, On Paul Hill, is an outstanding example of Forbes’ work. Painted in 1922, the fresh, lively landscape shows a view from Newlyn, looking over breezy Penzance, which is still recognisable today. “We are utterly delighted to have been able to acquire this picture for the public here in Cornwall," said Alison Bevan, Director of Penlee House.

The Museum described The Art Fund’s contribution, pledged in the initial fundraising stages, as ‘vital’. This was followed by a major grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, only hours before the painting was due to be sold at auction.

20.07.2006 - Scottish Museum To Return Its Preserved Maori Heads To New Zealand

Aberdeen University's Marischal Museum has announced it is to give back nine tattooed Maori heads to a museum in New Zealand.

The preserved heads, which have been stored at the museum for more than a century, will be returned to the Te Papa Tongerawa Museum in Wellington, New Zealand where they will be used for research.

The move is the latest response by UK museums to requests from New Zealand to return the remains of indigenous peoples. also last week agreed to the return of five similar heads to the same museum in Wellington.

photo of woodland behind a lake

19.07.2006 – National Trust Acquires Historic Parkland Around Sheffield Park Garden

The National Trust is celebrating the acquisition of Home Park – the historic, Grade I-listed parkland that was once part of the original estate of Sheffield Park in East Sussex. Both parks were laid out by Capability Brown and Humphry Repton and designed to be enjoyed as a whole.

It is the first time Home Park and Sheffield Park garden will be united since 1954, when owner Captain Granville Soames was obliged to sell the estate. Since then, Home Park, which sits in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, has been managed as private farmland.

The Trust plans to return the land to grazing, restore woodland features and water meadows. It is hoped that otters will return to the part of the River Ouse that runs through Home Park, and that 250-year-old trees on the land will be saved as homes for bats, rare fungi and lichens. Visitors will be able to enjoy the landscape.

19.07.2006 - Exceptional Harrow Church Becomes Grade II Listed

Culture Minister David Lammy has announced that the Roman Catholic Church of St William of York in Stanmore, Harrow, has been Grade II listed.

The decision to list the church, which is located on Du Cross Drive, was taken following advice from English Heritage, the Government's expert advisors on the built environment. English Heritage has described the building as "a church of exceptional quality".

a photo of a strange looking red house pictured against a blue sky

19.07.2006 - Book Series Brings New Perspective On The English Landscape

A new and comprehensive study of England's landscape was launched on July 19 2006, by English Heritage and Harper Collins.

The book series offers an authoritative view of the evolution of our landscape in eight regions: the North East (including Yorkshire and the Humber), North West, West Midlands, East Midlands, East of England, the South East, the West and South West.

Each study explores the distinctive characteristics of its region, charting how England's celebrated landscape has been occupied and shaped since the last Ice Age.

Copies of 'England's Landscape' are priced at £35 and will be available at bookshops across the country from August 9 2006. Or you can order copies from English Heritage Sales at Gillards on tel. 01761 452966 or email Photo: The House in The Clouds, East Anglia © English Heritage

19.07.2006 - National Archaeology Week Events At Fort Cumberland, Portsmouth

Free events for all the family organised by English Heritage will on offer at Fort Cumberland, Eastney, Portsmouth, this weekend (July 22-23).

Many activities will be themed around the 200th anniversary of the birth of famous engineer IK Brunel, who was born in Portsmouth. Visitors will be able to learn about his best-known creations like the Great Western Railway.

The programme also includes practical demonstrations of how to cast bronze axes, manufacture Roman glass and make medieval clay tiles. Hands-on activities include cave art, felt making and medieval style stained glass.

More details on the British Council for Archaeology website.

photo of Tate Modern building - a converted power station

19.07.2006 - Charity Commission Criticises Tate Over Trustee Artwork Purchases

The Charity Commission has announced, following an in-depth review, that the Tate gallery purchased art from serving trustees without permission, although the purchases were deemed to be in the gallery's best interests.

The review considered how Tate purchased seven works of art in five separate transactions without legal powers to do so. These include The Upper Room, now displayed in Tate Modern, purchased for £600,000 in 2005 from Turner Prize winner Chris Ofili, who was a Tate Trustee at the time.

“Our review has identified some important gaps in Tate’s policies and practices,” said Andrew Hind, Chief Executive of the Charity Commission. “In addition to Tate’s failure to seek our permission, we also found serious shortcomings in the processes for managing conflicts of interest and inadequate recording of decision making.”

A statement by Tate stated that the organisation fully accepted the Commission’s findings and had already made modifications to its procedures. “We are delighted that the Commission found the acquisition of The Upper Room in the best interests of Tat and we have already taken action to address their criticism,” said Tate Director, Sir Nicholas Serota.

19.07.2006 – Bob & Roberta Smith Curates Public Art In Essex

The artist known as Bob & Roberta Smith will curate artworks in the neglected open spaces of South Essex this autumn.

The project, ‘Art U Need: An Outdoor Revolution’, will involve five contemporary artists collaborating with local communities to create works that will regenerate public spaces.

Sites in Basildon, Castle Point, Rochford, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock have been chosed by community representatives, local arts authority officers and Bob & Roberta Smith to be enhanced by artists including Lucy Harrison, Hayley Newman and Jane Wilbraham. Canvey Heights, Rochford Reservoir and The Garrison Estate in Purfleet are three of the sites.

photo of lots of men in victorian sailors costumes on the deck of a ship

18.07.2006 - Victorian Navy Days To Return To Portsmouth's HMS Warrior 1860

Visitors to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard will be able to take a glimpse of life in the Victorian navy on board HMS Warrior 1860 as the popular Victorian Navy Days return to the ship on July 29 and 30.

There will be gun drills, guards of honour, piping parties, idlers and Victorian messing, all authentically recreated by The Alabama Crew, plus daily Punch and Judy shows.

18.07.2006 - Big Brother Evictee And Psychologist Head To Dana Centre To Explore The Science Of Conflict

Dr Harry Witchel, psychologist on the 2005 series of TV's Big Brother, and recent house evictee Lisa, will be at the Dana Centre in London on July 20 to discuss the science of conflict and what the housemates are really thinking.

By using slowed action films of body language Dr Witchel will show how much you can learn about the bad behaviour and crimes people are trying to hide from you, just by watching their 'microgestures'. Visitors will also be able to test out their own lying skills in the Dr's workshops.

photo of two knights on horseback jousting

18.07.2006 - Knight's Tournament Heads To Scarborough Castle

Scarborough Castle in North Yorkshire will ring to the sound of arms on armour at the English Heritage's Knight's Tournament on July 29 and 30 2006. The last time an authentic medieval tournament was held in Yorkshire was around 400 years ago and the new competition will follow the same rules and format as before.

Spectators will witness four teams of knights competing in archery, hand-to-hand combat and jousting. The knights will be equipped like their medieval ancestors with about 30kgs of armour and all the weapons are also real.

Other heats will take place across the country during the summer with the grand final taking place at Tynemouth Priory in September.

18.08.2006 - World Record Gilbert And Sullivan Attempt At Crich Tramway Village

Opera will resound through Crich Tramway Village in Derbyshire during the Gilbert and Sullivan World Record Attempt on July 29 2006.

Up to 100 Gilbert and Sullivan performers will attempt to complete all 13 popular operas in less than 29 hours. Starting at Buxton Opera House they will appear at many well-known Peak District locations and will be picked up by a vintage tram when they arrive at Crich, and plan to perform The Gondoliers at the tram depot between 10.15 and 12.15.

photo of the interior of a glass roofed empty warehouse

17.07.2006 - New Contemporary Art Centre To Open In Liverpool

A major new contemporary art centre is set to launch during Liverpool Biennial 2006. Greenland Street, in the city's historic port area, will comprise a total of 2,500 square metres of space to host large scale experimental art projects and new commissions.

The centre will also be home to Liverpool's first contemporary artists' residency scheme and will be the site for collaborations with other art venues around the world.

Greenland Street is currently undergoing redevelopment to create the gallery space and to improve access and create a reception area with an arts bookshop, cafe and hospitality area. The venue's opening programme will include Bloomberg New Contemporaries, the UK's most established annual show by emerging graduate artists.

17.07.2006 - Godalming Museum Launches Historic Buildings Resource

Godalming Museum has launched a new service, Images of Godalming, that offers visitors easy access to information about historic buildings around the town at the click of a mouse.

Photos and background information on more than 400 buildings, along with over 50 people associated with them, can now be accessed by computer at the museum. Use of the computer is free and volunteers are on hand to help. More images are planned and will be uploaded soon.

photo of the reading room of the british library

17.07.2006 - Andrew Neil To Chair Judges Of British Library Competition

Publisher and broadcaster Andrew Neil is to chair the judging panel of Make The Front Page, a British Library competition challenging entrants to design the newspaper front page of the future.

Budding journalists are asked to either write a compelling article on a major social, business or political issue, design the layout of the front page, or take the photograph that captures the essence of a story behind its headlines.

The competition is being held in conjunction with the British Library's major new exhibition, Front Page, which follows the story of Britain's newspapers over the last 100 years. Entries must be in by August 7 2006, see the British Library website for more details.

17.07.2006 - Scottish Chamber Orchestra To Perform At Stirling Castle

The entire Scottish Chamber Orchestra will be assembled in the Great Hall of Stirling Castle on Friday July 28 as part of the SCO’s 2006 Highlands Tour.

The audience will be treated to a range of musical delights by Brahms and Mendelssohn as well as a performance of Mozart’s Flute Concerto in G. Top flautist Alison Mitchell will take the solo role in a 250th birthday tribute to Mozart.

Tickets are limited to 300 and are priced at £16 for adults, £13 for concessions, £8 for people with a disability and £5 for students and the unwaged and are available from Albert Halls Box Office, Stirling, on 01786 473544.

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