My heritage experiences.

I wanted to write this next post about my heritage experinces. Before starting university I took a gap year and within that year I volunteered at two museums the first one being the Weald and Downland museum in Chichester sussex. This is a brilliant open air museum full of old houses that have been rescued and rebuilt. While there I was a guide tasked with sitting in the house allocated to me and telling vistors all about where the house came from as well as what life would of been like at the time. After working there for a few months we had training to work in the tudor kitchen and help the head chef. This was a lot of fun but did require a lot of concentration which I am not best at. Sadly although it was a lot of fun we had to leave as traveling there from our home in Brighton got to expensive. We had to get the train then a bus. There were also many days when you got no visitors at all so travelling all that way just to do nothing wasn’t practical.

The second museum we worked at was the Brighton toy and Model museum. if you have never been there then I highly reccomend it. It is small but it is an alladins cave full of any toy imaginable. In the centre there is a train set, so detailed it is like looking into a miniture world. I worked there for two days a week and helped out at every event. On Tuesdays it was my job to work behind the till, selling tickets and shop items as well as providing tourist infomation for the local area. On Fridays it was my job to work behind the scenes cataloguing and photographing toys and games so they could be stored in a database. This was fascinating although having good music to listen while working was key. The events though were my favourite. We had regular folk nights, hosted fringe events and even had craft days for children. It is amazing just how many people you can fit into a small museum. There were often people standing, squeezing in to get a good view of the act. I spent the events working the till. We always set up a makeshift bar behind the counter. I got very good at remembering drinks orders and speedily using the till. The beneifits of working there meant I got to see so many artists for free. Everyone different, some better than others. The setting of the toy museum made everything so magical. I feel so lucky to have had the opertunity to work in such a wonderful place. It is only since coming to uni that I have realised how much I miss it. It was the place where I was happiest. Like a small fantasy world inside a museum. I was there so often in the end it was like a second home. I even miss more than I do my actual home. Everyone was so sad when I left because I put so much effort in. I could of volunteered there everyday. I plan to go back over the summer and give even more of my time. Possibly working four or five days a week doing even more different jobs that might be needed.

What Heritage means to me.

Someone once asked me the question ‘what is Heritage?’ And to be honest I was really struggling to think of an answer. Heritage can mean so many things to so many different people. I could try and find some inspirational quote that embodies it but that would not really saying what I think. Personally heritage to me should capture the joy in someones eyes when they experience something they never have before. Embodying that feeling you get when you hold something that has not been held for 1000’s of years. Stories woven like fabric into the minds of ordinary people changing the way they view life now and forever. Breaking down barriers so history can be experienced in all it’s glory. Bloody battles, Brave kings, revolution, pain and suffering. I heard someone say once that heritage was the future. I don’t beleive this. Heritiage encomapsses all of life. The past, future and the present moment. I hope that by studying heritage I can open peoples eyes to the world around us. I am looking forward to sharing this journey with you.