Posted: Sep 10, 2019

Museum reveals initial plans for new galleries

The museum is offering you a chance to participate in the museum’s exciting Revival Project.

The museum is offering you a chance to participate in the museum’s exciting Revival Project by giving your feedback on the plans for the redevelopment of the new galleries. Members of the public are invited to view the masterplan visuals on Saturday 21 September 2019 between 11.00am and 2.00pm. These will be displayed in a gazebo in the garden.

Whilst Greendale Construction proceeds with the alteration works throughout the museum building, the design team has been examining how the ground floor and first floor spaces will ‘work’ in terms of new galleries and exhibitions to make sure that objects in the museum’s collections can be brought to life. The museum wants to be able to display more of its collections whilst protecting sensitive collections. Each gallery space will have a unique concept and will help create a varied experience for visitors. The intention is to create a modern museum that retains the character and charm of the unique historic building whilst exploring and recording the heritage of East Dorset.

Three main interpretive themes were identified during the public consultation in 2017. These cover the major aspects of the lives of the people of East Dorset from prehistoric times to the present day:

  • The story of the house with emphasis on the people who lived and worked there
  • The story of Wimborne Minster and its people
  • The story of East Dorset and its people

Emma Ayling, Director of the Priest’s House Museum, said: “Our Revival Project will transform the access and facilities of the museum, provide some interesting research opportunities for volunteers in the coming months, and ensure the area’s heritage is shared more widely than ever before. Please take the opportunity to drop in and give us your views.”

The £1.6 million Revival Project will be completed during spring 2020. It is supported by £982,000 of National Lottery funding awarded through The National Lottery Heritage Fund; charitable foundations H B Allen Charitable Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation, The Talbot Village Trust, The Foyle Foundation, The Pilgrim Trust, The Valentine Trust, The Georgian Group; Dorset Council; the former East Dorset District Council; Bloor Homes; Renaissance Homes; Teacher’s Building Society; The Civic Society; and the local community.

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The museum is now closed for refurbishment, reopening in spring 2020. The Tourist Information Centre and Garden Tea Room are open as usual. You can find us next to Wimborne Library.

Set in the heart of the charming, historic market town of Wimborne Minster, Wimborne Tourist Information Centre provides a warm welcome to visitors and local residents. Visit us in our temporary location next to Wimborne Library.