Heritage & Culture Warwickshire (HCW) is asking you to vote on your favourite object from Warwickshire Museum’s collection. Over the past month, HCW has been sharing across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram the top 10 objects selected for the vote, and now they want the public to have their say.
On 1 February, running until 7 February, people will be asked to share which is their favourite object, by commenting on special posts across HCW’s social media channels.
Cllr Heather Timms, portfolio holder for heritage and culture, said:
“We’ve had a great response to the objects we’ve shared, but now it’s time for the public to decide. They’re all great objects selected, but which one will be number one? It’s a chance for us to really get a feel for what captures the public’s imagination, so hopefully as many people as possible get involved!”
Here is a rundown of the top 10 list
Bubbenhall Handaxes – Dating from 500,000 BC, these handaxes were made by our human ancestors homo heidelbergensis and are some of the oldest stone tools ever found in Britain – they were excavated alongside bones of straight-toothed elephants. Watch the video: Bubbenhall Handaxes
Coal Miner’s Lamp – These early 20th century lamps were known as Davy lamps; the design provided safe light and a warning of harmful atmospheres for miners who worked in the collieries of North Warwickshire. Watch the video: Coal Miner’s Lamp
Giant Irish Deer Skeleton – Approximately 11,000 years old, this fine example of an exist Giant Irish Deer was excavated from a peat bog in the 19th century and has been one of Market Hall Museum’s most popular features. Named Oisin, he is also the twitter mascot for the museum. Watch the video: Giant Irish Deer Skeleton
Museum Bees – This is one of the country’s very few indoor observation beehives and has brought interest and enjoyment to generations of museum visitors, while promoting the importance of these vital pollinators. Watch the video: Museum Bees
Second South Warwickshire Hoard – This rare hoard of 440 silver Roman danarii is one of the few in the world to contain coins minted by all four rulers during the tumultuous civil war of AD 69, known as “the year of the four emperors”. Watch the video: Second South Warwickshire Hoard
Sheldon Tapestry Map of Warwickshire – This impressive 4m x 5m woven map was one of four commissioned by Ralph Sheldon in 1590 and depicts the county at the time of William Shakespeare. It is the only one of the four to survive completely. Watch the video: Sheldon Tapestry Map of Warwickshire
Spicer Taxidermy – Peter Spicer and his sons were an important and pioneering family of taxidermists in Victorian Warwick and Leamington, who made the trade into an art – their work is known throughout the world. Watch the video: Spicer Taxidermy
Suffragette Sash – This shoulder sash was worn by local activist Cicely Lucas as a member of the WSPU (known as the suffragettes), who fought and suffered for the rights of women to vote from 1903 to 1917. Watch the video: Suffragette Sash
Sweet Machine – This sweet press was used in a local sweet shop or chemist’s in Warwickshire in the early 20th century. Warm sugar mixture would be rolled through the press to cut individual sweets, such as pear drops and cough sweets. Watch the video: Sweet Machine
Wilmcote Plesiosaur Skeleton – This unique and near-complete Jurassic skeleton was unearthed near Stratford-on-Avon in the 19th century. Studied by experts across the world, it tells us about one of the key predators of Warwickshire’s ancient seas 200 million years ago. Watch the video: Wilmcote Plesiosaur Skeleton
Benjamin Earl, Web Editor for the Our Warwickshire website, said:
“The museum has a load of great objects, and the ability to share them with a wider audience was a chance we couldn’t turn down. It’s been a really fun way to get people engaged with some of Warwickshire’s most significant objects and hopefully get more people to visit the museum and also see our collections online. Check out all our social media and Our Warwickshire, and get involved as much as you can – this heritage is your heritage.”
About Warwickshire Bytes
Warwickshire Bytes is an innovative project launched by HCW in 2018 to create a digital heritage for the county. The project will create an innovative digital heritage festival, celebrating the history of Warwickshire by using archives, museum objects, and the public’s own contributions, shared via Our Warwickshire https://www.ourwarwickshire.org.uk/. Because it’s now easier for people to get online, Warwickshire’s County Record Office and Museum Service want to make more of their collections available to readers the world over. The project will conclude with a week long digital festival in March, featuring one event at the County Record Office on the 3rd and another at Rugby Library on the 5th. For more information email email@example.com. You can find Warwickshire Bytes at tinyurl.com/bytes2020 and via HCW’s social media channels.
More information about Heritage and Culture can be found on the website: http://heritage.warwickshire.gov.uk/