Government coronavirus restrictions have meant that Ipswich Borough Council has had to close many of its buildings such as sports centres, swimming pools, the Regent and Corn Exchange – and our museums.
But despite these closures, we have still had a team working on a really important project – the plans for the redevelopment of Ipswich Museum. Purpose-built as the town’s new museum in 1881, it remains a wonderful building containing amazing collections – but it’s 30 years since its last upgrade and it now needs improvements.
Last year the Council won a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, backed by extra funding from the council and the Friends of Ipswich Museums, to work up detailed redevelopment plans. During the lockdown, a team has been beavering away at plans for new galleries, a café, better visitor facilities, and a chance to create new displays.
They would really like to hear your views. There is an online survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/JG52FC6 which takes less than 10 minutes to complete and will be really helpful in shaping the future of our much-loved Museum. Everyone who fills in the survey is entered into a prize draw for a £50 shopping voucher.
Despite our buildings being closed, the Museums team has put on range of online activities, images and articles to keep us informed and entertained during the lockdown.
One that interested me was the invitation to Share Your Story: ‘We want to know how your life has changed, what you’re thinking, and what objects you’d show people to explain how you lived through this time’.
The intention is to allow Ipswich people to tell the story of their different experiences of the COVID-19 pandemic as a record for future generations. It is a real reminder that we are living through historic times.
Information about this and much more can be found at:
These are difficult times for many of us, and our Museums team have played their part in helping us get through the pandemic. Getting involved in the plans for our Museum redevelopment helps us to remember that, although present times are difficult, there are still many positive things to look forward to in future.