A special ‘All Change’ exhibition which showcases the history of Doncaster museum past and present will give residents a last chance to experience the museum in its current home.
Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery on Chequer Road will close its doors on Friday, 17 January 2020 before reopening in its new home just up the road on Waterdale in summer 2020.
The exhibition will take a fond look back to when the museum used to be at Beechfield House before it moved to its current location in 1964 when it was officially opened by Princess Margaret.
This will give residents the opportunity to reminisce about the museum, relive happy memories and see a number of the exhibits which will not be moving to the new Central Library and Museum on the former girl’s school site. The new building will showcase many exhibits that have not been seen before and allow for more rotation of exhibits and displays.
The temporary closure allows the conservationist to carefully go through all the exhibits, recording them and checking whether the ones scheduled to move are in a suitable condition to make the short journey. This conservation process and the preparing of exhibits for the new museum is a delicate specialised process and does take considerable time.
The social history museum at Cusworth Hall will be available while Doncaster Museum is temporarily closed.
There are also plans to launch a dedicated travelling museum in spring 2020 funded by Arts Council England. This mobile museum will travel right across the borough and have a ‘Best of Doncaster’ theme. It will showcase some of the fascinating artefacts which will go into the new museum and give people a taste of what they can expect to see and enjoy. It will also display objects and stories loaned from community groups and individuals, celebrating the Borough’s rich and varied history.
The 1960s building will continue to be used for complementary cultural and learning activities with future uses that benefit the community currently being explored.
Debbie John-Lewis, Assistant Director Communities, said: “We are embarking on an exciting journey for Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery with a new, ultra-modern facility going up on the former girls’ school site on Waterdale.
“To get everything ready for its opening in summer 2020 we need to close the current museum and have put on a special ‘All Change’ exhibition to look at Doncaster Museum. I would urge people to go along to Doncaster Museum in its final weeks at its current home to get a final glimpse of some of the exhibits which may hold fond memories. This is the start of a whole new chapter for the current museum building and Doncaster Museum in the future.”
People can see the exhibition in the museum foyer and look round the exhibits on Thursdays and Fridays (10am to 4.30pm) and on Saturdays (10.30am to 4pm) from now until Friday, 17 January 2020.
The museum will be closed during Christmas from 23 December 2019 to 2 January 2020. More information about the museum and the ‘All Change’ exhibition can be found at: www.doncaster.gov.uk/museum
Further information on the new Central Library and Museum, which celebrates the former girls’ school by restoring the central frontage and encasing it in glass, is available at: www.doncaster.gov.uk/newlibraryandmuseum