8 February 2013

1913 And All That

(or ‘it’s all about weddings and pigs!’)

Where to begin with this weeks blog? There’s been so much going on to get both Hill Top and The Beatrix Potter Gallery ready for opening on the 9th Feb. But I think we’re just about there!

This year marks the centenary of Beatrix’s wedding to William Heelis, as well as her writing and publishing ‘The Tale of Pigling Bland’. So we’ve decided to link together both Hill Top and the Gallery to tell the story of Beatrix’s 1913.

We’ve been conservation cleaning everywhere…

Rosemary cleaning the Doll's House at Hill Top

Spot Catherine cleaning the kitchen cupboard

... training volunteers and staff…

… and trying out some of our new activities. Spot the difference!....

Spot the difference - Beatrix and William on the day before their wedding; Pete and Sarah modelling our replica Beatrix and William wedding hats at the Gallery!

Our new touchscreen modules have arrived for the Gallery (and they’re lovely) as well as the recordings of traditional country dance music to be played in the upstairs sitting room at Hill Top. Liz has carefully researched them and has chosen tunes which are all mentioned in the Heelis documents.

We’ve got a special treat this year at the Gallery too. As well as showing Beatrix’s original artwork (not just Pigling Bland, but Pig Robinson and other highlights), The Beatrix Potter Society has loaned us two walking sticks which originally belonged to Beatrix and William. The sticks began life in Cumbria but found their way to Maurice Sendak in the States (author of ‘Where The Wild Things Are’ who sadly died last year). They then went to the Beatrix Potter Society, who handed them to us to display for this year.

Beatrix and William's walking sticks on loan from The Beatrix Potter Society.

So, come along and see us at Hill Top and The Beatrix Potter Gallery – we’re now open!


PS. A bit of exclusive news - I thought you might like to see these photos from Wray Castle. We were all really excited when Rose demonstrated that the portcullis is now working! So when the Castle opens in March, we’ll be able to have the ceremonial raising and lowering of the portcullis each day!!