We’re pleased to announce that the Isles of Scilly Museum will be taking up residence in the offices and reception area at the front of the Town Hall, with a view to opening as soon as COVID restrictions allow. The council is currently in the process of reviewing a licence for the museum to occupy the building for the next few years.
The rest of the Town Hall will remain as council offices and the public use of the building will be reviewed as the lockdown requirements ease. In working with the museum to make this space available, all parties will ensure that public health considerations are prioritised.
Long term plans for a new museum and cultural centre are moving forward. A feasibility study has begun which will result in a report to the Development Group, made up of the Isles of Scilly Museum Association, Council of the Isles of Scilly, Duchy of Cornwall and Islands' Partnership. The report should be completed by July 2021.
Kate Hale, Curator of the Isles of Scilly Museum, said: “this is a temporary arrangement and in no way replaces the old Museum, but it does offer us the opportunity to create an information centre, where our volunteers can interface with the public and direct them towards the ‘Museum on the Move’ exhibitions and trails. The Museum on the Move project is a response to the closure of the Museum in June 2019, with twelve pop-up displays around the five inhabited islands and a Shipwreck walking companion app. The Town Hall space will allow us to display a ‘top ten’ range of artefacts which indicate the breadth and quality of our collection, and run the museum shop to sell our publications, postcards, posters and secondhand books and maps. The venue will also provide a focus for fundraising efforts to procure a new building and feature a display about the history of the old Museum.”
Councillor Robert Francis, Chairman of the Council of the Isles of Scilly, said: “I’m delighted that the museum will have a space in the heart of Hugh Town to be able to exhibit some of its fascinating collection and provide information to visitors and residents about the history of our islands. This is a temporary measure whilst the museum finds a permanent home that meets its needs for the future. In the meantime, this space alongside the range of temporary events over the season will be a welcome addition to the visitor offer and I’m sure of great interest to the community.”
The ‘Museum on the Move’ project has been funded by the Isles of Scilly Voucher Scheme and by Cornwall Museums Partnership as part of their Coastal Timetripping initiative.
The app will go live for testing and feedback on 12 April 2021. It is hoped that the pop-up displays, shop and fully developed app will be launched in the week beginning 17 May to coincide with public spaces opening up, subject to the government's COVID roadmap staying on its indicative schedule.
For more information please contact Kate Hale, Curator of the Isles of Scilly Museum, on 07966 446481 or firstname.lastname@example.org.