Specialist Heritage Courses at Black Country Living Museum

Understanding and Caring for Museum Collections

Whether you want to find out more, develop a new hobby, learn a new skill or extend your knowledge and expertise, we offer a range of exciting, hands-on learning experiences for adults, making use of the Museum's historic buildings and collections, our industrial landscape and the traditions and culture of the Black Country.

These courses are aimed at staff already working in Museums or members of the public with an interest in developing the knowledge, skills and understanding of caring for historic artefacts. All the courses have a very practical, hands-on focus with time to investigate and handle real objects.

Environmental Monitoring & Control:  Wednesday 30th April 2014

This course will examine the causes of deterioration of objects caused by a poor environment; how to measure environmental factors and monitor the indoor climate and show ways of controlling and improving the environment.

Maximum Places: 15      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Robert Child

Robert originally trained and worked as a research chemist in the oil industry. He later retrained as a conservator and worked at theRoyalAlbertMemorialMuseuminExeter, mainly on its archaeological and ethnographical collections. He moved to theMuseumofWelsh Lifein 1977 as their Senior Conservator and later became Head of Conservation at the National Museum of Wales. His specialism is in preventive conservation with a particular interest in insect pest control. As such, he is Advisor on Insect Pests to the National Trust and consultant and lecturer internationally.

Understanding Historical textiles: Thursday 8 May 2014

An introduction to caring for historic textiles. This course will investigate textile deterioration, care, conservation and display. The course will use original textiles and visual sources to illustrate processes and will include case studies of particular conservation projects. There will be practical sessions, including examining and recording historic textiles and handling and preparing for storage and display. Participants are invited to bring examples of their own historic costume for study, should they wish.

Maximum places: 15      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Alison Lister ACR

Alison is the Director of Textile Conservation Limited, a private conservation studio based inBristol. The studio currently has five conservators and undertakes work on a wide variety of textile artefacts including tapestries, costume, upholstered furniture, flags and embroideries for clients in both the public and private sector. Alison has a Postgraduate Diploma in Textile Conservation and is anInstituteofConservation Accredited Conservator. Prior to working in private practice she was conservator tutor at the Textile Conservation Centre and is still involved as an Associate Tutor on the BA (Hons) Conservation course at Camberwell College of Arts.

Understanding Ceramics: Tuesday 13th May 2014

The course will concentrate on the domestic ware typically used in 19thand early 20thcentury homes in the Black Country and will give an overview of the key manufacturers in theMidlands, and their makers’ marks. Focusing on the handling and examination of real ceramic objects, the course will provide an introduction to the different categories of ceramics and how to identify them. Examples will include Staffordshire transfer printed and hand painted wares, ironstone, slip ware, country pottery and Measham “bargeware” tea pots.

Maximum Places: 10      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Nick Berthoud

Nick is a dealer and collector in 18thand 19thcentury ceramics with a particular interest in late 18thcentury industrial items. He lectures regularly and is a member of theEnglish Ceramic Circle, the committee of the Northern Ceramic Society and Chairman of New Hall and Friends.

Mould & Pest Management: Wednesday 14th May 2014

This course will look at what mould and fungi are and why they occur in historic collections. It will discuss the importance of the environment, the hazards associated with mould and methods of controlling them. You will also look at all aspects of insect pest management including identification of museum pests and their damage, and monitoring and control treatments suitable for historic material.

Maximum Places: 15      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Robert Child (See above)

Social History of Tea: Tuesday 3rd June 2014

A cup of tea is an integral part of our everyday life – but it was not always so. This course will explore the social history of tea from the 17thcentury to the late 19thcentury, focussing on the impact it had on the development of ceramics.  The course will look at the changes in culture and etiquette that only gave us our national drink, but also gave us the teapot and tea cup and saucer.

Maximum Places: 10      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Nick Berthoud

Nick is a dealer and collector in 18thand 19thcentury ceramics with a particular interest in late 18thcentury industrial items. He lectures regularly and is a member of theEnglish Ceramic Circle, the committee of the Northern Ceramic Society and Chairman of New Hall and Friends.

Ethics in Conservation: Wednesday 11th June 2014

Should clocks be restored to working order? Is Trigger’s broom with six new heads and four new handles still his original broom? Would you clean off the blood from Admiral Lord Nelson’s coat where he was shot and killed? The problems of conservation and restoration have raged forever.

This one day course will look at the aims of conservation which are to preserve the integrity of an object without changing it too much and the aims of restoration which are to make a damaged or deteriorated object more understandable. It will consider the idea of value both in monetary terms and in cultural terms and examine the problems caused with contemporary material from conceptual artists and production line objects.

Maximum Places: 15      Cost: £50 per person

Course Leader: Robert Child (See above)

For further information please contact:

Laura Turner, Public Relations Assistant (Acting) Tel: 0121 521 5692

Mobile 07508 741652 laura.turner@bclm.com

About the Museum

Established in 1978, Black Country Living Museum is one of the UK’s leading open-air museums.  Designated by Arts Council England for the quality and national significance of its collections, it is a remarkable place to explore, enjoy and spend time.  Set in 26 acres with over 150 historic buildings and features, and attracting 240,000 visitors each year and over 8m people since it first opened, it offers a glimpse into 200 years of history like no other.  The Museum (a registered educational charity) records and exemplifies the contribution and impact of the Black Country region since the 18th century to the development of the modern industrialized world.  Black Country folk changed the world, and the Museum tells the story of a very special time and place in history and some of the most hard-working, ingenious and influential people you could imagine.  It offers a visitor experience that few others can match. www.bclm.com

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About Us

Established in 1978, Black Country Living Museum is one of the UK’s leading open-air museums. Designated by Arts Council England for the quality and national significance of its collections, it is a remarkable place to explore, enjoy and spend time. Set in 26 acres with over 150 historic buildings and features, and attracting 240,000 visitors each year and over 8 million people since it first opened, it offers a glimpse into 200 years of history like no other. The Museum (a registered educational charity) records and exemplifies the contribution and impact of the Black Country region since the 18th century to the development of the modern industrialized world. Black Country folk changed the world, and the Museum tells the story of a very special time and place in history and some of the most hard-working, ingenious and influential people you could imagine. It offers a visitor experience that few others can match. www.bclm.com

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