St Mary’s 200th Launch and Reception!


Today is Monday, so I’ve had two days to recover from setting up the exhibition and the launch/reception. This past weekend has been incredible. It was so much fun seeing people enjoy the exhibition, it really did make the last few months of hard work and uncertainty worth it.

For those who couldn’t make it, I’ll walk you through the day.


Myself and Jade arrived at 11.30am to start setting up. The reception wouldn’t officially start until 1.30pm, but there was still a few things to set up. Happily, one of the major tasks on the list had been completed before we arrived, which was the re-felting of the bible case.


The case itself was looking old and tired, it was donated some time ago and it needed sprucing up. Katherine from the Art Gallery made a pit stop at Hobbycraft on Friday evening, and upon completion the case appeared much nicer. Definitely a win, as the bible drew lots of attention throughout the day.


With two hours before opening, we had lots to do. I made three separate trips over to the shop opposite for supplies, including a comments book for visitors. We had to clean the exhibition space one last time, make sure the talk the following Saturday was adequately advertised and set up the food and drink stations.


At about 12.30pm, Sue from St Mary’s arrived and volunteered to serve the drinks throughout the day, which was a huge help for myself and Jade. As Guardian of the church, we were keen to get Sue’s opinion on the exhibition. She loved it, which we hoped was a sign of things to come.

At around 13.20pm, we had been waiting for people to turn up and were starting to panic that no one would come. We needn’t have been too concerned though, as five minutes later we had our very first visitor! This is Jill from the Heritage Trust, who helped us throughout the process and is providing the talk this Saturday!


Jill’s appearance seemed to open the gates, as people quickly started to arrive in groups. The next two hours passed in a blur, as the art link was packed out with visitors curious to see what we had created. We even had the Mayor visit, which was exciting and seemed to create quite the stir.

By the time 4pm rolled around, we were exhausted from what had been a very busy and successful day! Most of the cakes had been eaten, and we only had a couple of bottles of Prosecco and wine left. By this point we’d had over 60 people visit the exhibition, which we were ecstatic about.


The Art Gallery is open until 5pm, so this number likely went up even higher. When it turned 4pm, things started to die down so we cleaned away the food and glasses and made ready to leave. It had been an amazing day but a long week had taken its toll and we were ready to relax.

Which brings us to now. The exhibition is live and free to visit until the 8th July. All the hard work has been done and the end result has surpassed my wildest expectations.

I have no doubt that this is due to all the help we’ve had, so I’d like to take this opportunity to thank a few people who’ve been involved.

  • First, I’d like to thank Jade who has worked hard on the exhibition, has provided great feedback and has made everything better
  • Phil Catling, for giving two museum assistants a chance to create something wonderful and for the insightful advice on-tap
  • Jill Trumble for allowing us to use her research and for helping out so much
  • Katherine, Nick and Susan at the Art Gallery for all their help, time and patience. If you’re thinking of creating an exhibition, I can’t recommend these guys highly enough

There will probably be a couple more posts in the future concerning the exhibition, but for now I’m going to bid you farewell. Go see the exhibition if you can, it would mean so much to us.

Thank you for reading my long, rambling posts over the last few months, it’s been an honour.



19th June 2017




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