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Friday, 1 August 2014

A Runnaway Running Day Success!

All of us here at the Museum would like to thank everyone who came along and helped make the Running Day such a success. From the visitors, the volunteers, staff and the camera crew, we couldn't have had such a great day without you all.
We all had a great time and hope that everyone who came along to see our collection of trains running enjoyed themselves too. It was good to see so many people who had not been before, who said "I always walk past but I've not come in before" and those who never knew we were here in the first place. We hope you all felt welcome and we look forward to seeing you again.
Because the Children Go Free day was such a success and we loved meeting so many new people we are thinking about putting on more Children Visit For Free days during the summer holidays, giving the kids something to do that's a little bit out of the ordinary on a weekday. We can't confirm anything yet but keep an eye out for posters and pamphlets in the next few weeks.
We asked anyone who was interested in seeing the final broadcast TV show to give us their email address so we could forward the link to YouTube when it became available and naturally we'll be hosting a link to it from our channel and on the website but if you'd also like to get the link sent directly to your inbox when we get it then email us and we'll make sure you get it just as soon as we do.

Since we're on the subject of children in the museum, I would like to make a little addendum to mention that we are going to be re-launching the Children's Club in September. After that the club will be open one Sunday every two months when we will have toys out to play with, art, crafts and stories told by one of our resident raconteurs.

For more information as it becomes available, look out for our blogs, Facebook and Twitter updates, posters or simply join our mailing list where we can inform you of all these details plus much more museum news as it happens. To sign up, just drop us an email with "Mailing List" in the subject field to info@brightontoymuseum.co.uk

Friday, 25 July 2014

Join The Museum Family!

Like any charity in these straitened times Brighton Toy and Model Museum is always looking for ways to increase its turnover. Our ambition is to deliver something worthwhile to our benefactors while making enough money to add something extra to the visitor experience. If the museum gets old and stale we lose visitors, creating a cycle whereby we can't afford to operate. Without the superb efforts that our volunteers make to come in every day, working hard to make each and every guest feel welcome and offering tourist information, we would not be able to offer the visitor experience we do. The museum also does a surprising amount of work for foreign students and those seeking work experience. Most people wouldn't realise that as well as British helpers we usually have a few volunteers from France, Germany and Spain working in the museum all the time in order to gain experience in the travel and tourism industry while also improving their English and making friends with the native volunteers and staff.

We've always run a membership or 'Friends' scheme which allows you special privileges within the museum. These include complimentary admission for you and a guest, access to our running days and other events, newsletters and notifications of upcoming events.

In addition to the Friends membership, in future we are going to start offering membership of our 'Supporters' Club' which will offer everything that the Friends membership offers along with a variety of 'surprises' which will include evenings with trustees and patrons, along with invitations to events that are organised and funded by trustees and the Museum's Collections Trust. These could include exclusive dinners at world class hotels in Sussex, London and beyond, free hotel weekends, and invitations to visit some of the private collections of our trustees, many of which are as impressive as the exhibits we have on display, however, they have never been made open to the general public.

The money we make from the Supporters' Club subscriptions will be used to establish a workshop and education centre in the area adjoined to the west side of the museum which is currently being used as a workshop for the 00 diorama. It will go towards modifications to the electrics and emergency lighting, a new disabled ramp and investment in exhibits which will be available to handle to support our education and "special groups" sessions.

As well as these improvements to the public areas of the museum we also intend to create an exclusive Supporters' area above the workshop at the back of the shop and reception area. This area will have additional displays and a comfortable lounge area exclusively for staff and supporters.

If you're interested in becoming a Supporter we have several levels of membership:
Bronze at £10 per month
Silver at £25 per month
Gold at £50 per month
Together with the monthly subscriptions we also welcome annual payments of £100 to £500, we also accept one-off payments of £50 and above.

To take advantage of this Supporters' scheme and all the promotions and offers that come with it then please email us in the first instance info@brightontoymuseum.co.uk

Pride In Brighton

We just wanted to let you know that we will be closed on Saturday 2nd August because we're all going to be enjoying the Pride celebrations.

We are looking forward to a great weekend and hope you have a fantastic time too!

All at Brighton Toy and Model Museum.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Recent Events: Toys In The Community Drop In Evening

On Wednesday we held an event to encourage people currently living in Brighton and Hove to come along and get involved in our project which will collect and share their memories of toys and models from their childhoods.
It was good to meet so many people who wanted to get involved in this project, and we're sure that with their help and the help of the contributors we gain in the future, then the Toys In The Community, Valuing Memories of dolls, teddy bears and construction toys initiative will be a valuable resource for people interested in childhood, play, development and memory for many years to come.
As well as the participants who came in and offered to share their memories we also had some of the consultants who are going to help make this project a reality in the museum to meet the volunteers and show them, and the participants what the process of gathering, collecting and storing the memories will involve.

When the project comes to fruition it will be more than just a relic in a museum, we are planning on keeping digital records of the memories which can then be shared in perpetuity on the internet, through a printed book and exhibit which will travel to various locations in order to bring memories of childhood and toys to where they are wanted.
In order to achieve this goal we have recruited the services of Steven Cragg, a local photographer who specialises in portraits, photographic services and events.
The designer who is taking care of the website which will be dedicated to the Toys In The Community project is Peter Pavement @surfimpress, managing director and founder of Surface Impression.
Paul Dutnall from JunkTV was also here,as  he is taking care of the videography for the project. JunkTV are a local youth and community TV production and screening company and Paul will be helping us tape and edit the interviews that we create.
Also present on the evening was Sarah Hitchings @spokenmemoirs of Spoken Memoirs another local organisation who specialise in recording oral histories, interviewing, oral history training, preservation and research.

Be On TV For Free (If you're a kiddie)


Friday, 27 June 2014

In The News!



If you're a regular reader of our blog or you've been to visit the toy museum recently you'll no doubt be aware that we've got a campaign going to collect memories of toys and childhood from people all over the Brighton and Hove area. The campaign is due to come to fruition next year, in order to coincide with 25 years of being open to visitors. Our idea is to gather thoughts and memories of people who are currently living in the area, who may have come from anywhere in the world, to share with other people. The memories will be put together and used to create a traveling exhibit, a book and new website which will be a permanent resource for people who are interested in toys, models and childhood generally.

As part of our activities to promote the project we've been approaching people in all sorts of places to get interested and promote the open evening we're having on Wednesday 9th of July from 5:30 to 7:30 where people can come along, have a look around the museum for free and sign up to be interviewed about their memories of their own toys which they used to play with. As well as getting a few pieces in local newspapers and magazines Andrea, our project manager for the Toys In The Community, Valuing Memories of dolls, teddy bears and construction toys initiative has been interviewed on the local BBC and Juice 107.2 radio stations. You can read about the interview Andrea gave to Juice here, unfortunately they don't appear to have a way of listening to the piece after broadcast but if you want to listen to Andrea waxing lyrical (although early in the morning, we admire her commitment!) then you can find the show by clicking on Neil Pringle's face. Neil Pringle
So remember, if you're able to come along on the open evening, then please do, and if you're not able to come down but you're interested in contributing a memory, please do let us know by calling on 01273 749494 or email us at memories@brightontoymuseum.co.uk so we can arrange a time that's convenient for you to come to us or we could even come to you. We're looking forward to hearing from you!

Friday, 20 June 2014

Time To Stop Playing Around And Start Talking Toys

Brighton Toy and Model Museum is looking for people of all ages to participate in an oral history project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, to speak about their memories of their childhoods and the toys they played with, of all types from the past up until today.
No matter what your background, whether you had a great collection of toys or just one favourite from which you could never be parted, they want to hear from you.

Brighton Toy and Model Museum opened underneath Brighton Train Station in in 1991. In order to celebrate its 25th anniversary in two years' time, museum staff are gathering memories from people from all walks of life to contribute to this heritage project. The Heritage Lottery Fund granted the museum funding for this venture which will result in a community based outreach project, a website, book and a touring exhibition, all of which will be completed in 2016.

The open evening will be held as a drop in event on Wednesday, 9th of July 2014 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm at the museum, where you can go and meet other people involved in the project. Interviews won't be carried out at the event but staff will arrange a convenient time for you to come and be interviewed about your memories.

Light refreshments will be provided and the museum will be free to look around for the duration of the recruitment event. If you are unable to make it to the open evening but are interested in contributing your memories just email memories@brightontoymuseum.co.uk or phone 01273 749 494.