The Museum of Cambridge has announced its latest Annual Appeal: ‘Saving Our Stories’ which aims to raise significant funds to support the Museum to care for its large collection of objects.
The Museum cares for over 40,000 objects unique to the region of Cambridgeshire. This includes an extensive collection of objects relating to Fenland folklore collected by famous folklorist and curator Enid Porter, such as a ‘lovers knot’, a set of lucky mole’s paws, and brightly-coloured glass balls used to dazzle witches.
The Museum’s collection also comprises several thousand objects relating to the history of the city of Cambridge. These include historic pub signs painted by Richard Hopkins Leach, a bench belonging to the late Professor Stephen Hawking, and several beautiful watercolour paintings of artist Mary Greene who captured the areas of Cambridge that have long since disappeared from living memory.
However, rising costs, combined with the impact of extensive repairs and maintenance to the Museum’s 400-year-old building has meant that the Museum is seeking donations from generous supporters in the local area and beyond.
This latest Appeal will raise money to support the care and conservation of the Museum’s extensive collection. Proceeds from the Appeal will go towards the purchase of new equipment and technology, support for a team of collections care staff and volunteers, and investment in the conservation of key museum objects.
Annie Davis, Development Manager said:
‘Behind every single object in our Museum is a whole host of fascinating stories; the story of the person who made it, the person who used it – or even the person who found it in a basement and gave it to the Museum.
We are proud custodians of the 40,000 objects in our collection. Yet collections care and conservation is a complex and costly business, requiring specialist equipment, training, extensive staff and volunteer time, and substantial storage space.
Our 400-year-old building must be kept in excellent condition in order to protect its contents. Looking after our objects properly means maintaining stable temperatures and humidity. Turning off the heating to cut down on utility bills isn’t an option for us, so rising energy bills pose a real risk to the Museum.
So today, we’re asking you for your help. Please help us keep our collections safe so that the unique stories each object tells can be handed down to future generations.
Please donate today to support our Annual Appeal. You can donate by going to our website and giving online, sending a cheque by post to Museum of Cambridge, 2/3 Castle Street, CB3 0AQ or dropping past the Museum and using our ‘tap to donate’ device.
You can also support by spreading the word – tell friends, family and colleagues and encourage them to support us too.’
Lucy Walker, Chair of the Board of Trustees:
‘We hold an irreplaceable collection of significant objects relating to the history of Cambridge and the Fens. Looking after these objects, and keeping them safe for future generations, is at the heart of what we do.
Cambridge has a wealth of museums that tell the story of evolution, Antarctic exploration, archaeology or the history of science, but very little about Cambridge and its people. We are here to make sure that the remarkable stories of the people of Cambridge and its surrounds are preserved for future generations.
I implore all those who love the history of this region to donate to our Annual Appeal’