What a great afternoon at Craven Museum (in Skipton Town Hall) we had today. Lizzie Dawson, Community Heritage Curator, and Rachel Terry, Museum and Collections Officer, gave us a behind the scenes tour of the collection. The Museum's bid for Heritage Lottery Funding, "Stories and Treasures of Street and Dale", is to open up access and turn the Museum into a cultural hub.
The museum moved to the Town Hall in in 1973 from the Library where it created in 1928 by Craven Naturalists and Scientific Association. The collection is very eclectic with something of interest for everyone; it contains many important and rare items, including a Shakespeare First Folio.
Our tour covered items from the Geology and Archaeology collections - a mammoth tooth to a beautiful iridescent Roman bottle; a flint arrowhead to an ichthyosaur! We also ventured into the store rooms where there is a large costume collection with some particularly gorgeous pieces pictured below; there is a large social history collection with some really interesting items giving insights into the lives of ordinary people in Craven.
You can access the collection for research purposes by arrangement when the museum is closed to the general public on Tuesdays - well worth it if you're looking for a bit of inspiration or want a closer look at some items.
Ichthyosaur head - eye on the left, teeth just visible!