On 5 September 2021, the Weald & Downland Living Museum turned 51. As we approached our anniversary weekend, we decided to take a look back over the last 5 decades and mention some of the key events that have taken place at the Weald & Downland Living Museum over the past 51 years!
Let’s take a look back at some of the key events from the 1990’s:
- Founder, Roy Armstrong MBE, receives an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from the University of Sussex, at the age of 90.
- The Museum is playing a large part in the UK’s museum and cultural heritage sector and the tourism industry with Chris Zeuner chairing the Association of Independent Museums and appointed president of the European Association of Open Air Museums.
- As part of the Museum’s expanding lifelong learning programme, the Joint Centre for Heritage Conservation & Management is launched in partnership with the University of Bournemouth. The Museum’s two MSc courses, in timber building conservation and building conservation begin four years later.
- The Museum dismantles Longport Farmhouse, to be demolished on the site of the new Channel Tunnel terminal in Kent; the building becomes its new entrance facility, shop and offices.
- The Museum is one of a small group of museums to be Designated in a new Government scheme recognising ‘pre-eminent’ collections of special national and international importance. In the same year a £250,000 legacy from the supporting Minet family enables the Museum to establish an Endowment Fund.
On the anniversary weekend of the opening of the Museum, we spent the weekend focusing on the buildings at the heart of the Museum collection – their construction methods, building forms, and conservation. This weekend also paid tribute to Roger Champion (1937-2021), Museum Master Carpenter.