York Castle Museum Celebrates 80th Anniversary with the chance for members of the public to contribute to a new display

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York Castle Museum Celebrates 80th Anniversary with the chance for members of the public to contribute to a new display

5 February 2018

York Castle Museum first opened on April 23 (St George’s Day) 1938, with people queuing around the Eye of York to come and see its ground breaking displays and street scene. More than 32 million people have visited since.

To mark the 80th anniversary there will be special events and a new display showing some of the earliest and more unusual items which were collected by the museum’s founder, Dr Kirk.

But the museum would also like members of the public to suggest an object to be included in the display which represents contemporary York in some way.

Helen Langwick, York Castle Museum interpretation and content manager, said:

“This is a very special year for York Castle Museum and one of the ways we want to celebrate it is to ask the public what object we should acquire that represents York at this moment in time. It could something that reflects current trends in York or an object which is disappearing from modern day life.

“It doesn’t have to be made in York or the surrounding area – it could be a mass produced item – but it should have a very strong York story to tell. The chosen item will go on display and then into the permanent collections of the museum.

“The idea is in keeping with Dr Kirk’s vision for the museum of preserving a way of life for future generations to see and we hope to find something that will help give a snapshot of the social history of the city or surrounding area right now.”

Possible areas of consideration could be:

  • An everyday object with a York connection which is disappearing from use.
  • A contemporary object which tells a great York story.
  • Something that reflects the changes of the businesses which operate in York.
  • Something that gives an impression of the changes in the cultural and social landscape of the city and surrounding area.
  • Something completely original to York that was created in the last ten years.
  • An object with a York connection which reflects the digital changes to society.
  • An object from York with the potential to be ground-breaking in the future.

To submit an object for consideration please click here to download a submission form and email it to enquiries@ymt.org.uk. Alternatively, you can visit York Castle Museum to pick up a submission form at reception. The exact criteria is provided below.

All entries must be received by March 11 2018 at 5pm. The winner will be announced on Wednesday April 4 2018. Please note that we are looking for written submissions only; please do not bring items in for inspection or to be dropped off.

The new display will open on April 21 and be part of a weekend of special activities to mark the anniversary. Actors playing Dr Kirk and Violet Rogers, the first curator of the museum, will be on the recreated Victorian street Kirkgate, to tell visitors the story of the museum. There will be a tour of the original route visitors would have taken and a model of the Female Prison (the building which houses the original part of the museum) will be created.

Full Submission Criteria

  • Dimensions: Object should be no more than of 40cm x 40cm x 20cm.
  • Material: Object should not be made from a material that will decay or cause damage to other objects in the museum collections.
  • Provenance: Object should come with good supporting information that tells its story and should include details such as where and how the object has been used, when, and who by.
  • Association with York: Object should come with good supporting information that demonstrates a strong association with York.
  • Continuation of the collecting tradition of Dr Kirk: Object should come with good supporting information that demonstrates how it is a continuation of the collecting tradition of Dr Kirk and his ambition for a museum of ‘bygones’.
  • Declaration: The potential donor (i.e. person completing the submission form) has completed the disclaimer section and agreed to the conditions therein.

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