Monday, 5 October 2009

The Staffordshire Hoard

We've been to see the Staffordshire Hoard at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery this morning (the only chance we were going to have to see it).

The Hoard - for those of you reading this from outside the area - has been the talk of the region for a couple of weeks now, one of the most significant finds from the so-called "DarkAges" ever made in Britain. Having been declared Treasure Trove by a coroner, there is much hope that it might be acquired by a consortium of local museums but in the meantime, a small part of the Hoard has been put on display here in Birmingham.

Interest has been intense and people have been queueing for in excess of two hours to see just a small collection. Those who say that the days of the traditional museum, with exhibits in glass cases, are gone and that everything now has to be interactive really are talking through their bottoms (as I've always maintained). They need to witness the public interest being shown here.

We arrived at 9.00am, just as they were opening and our "queueing" time was only about 10 minutes. In fact, the "selection" on display was considerably more than I'd been expecting and was enough to make my jaw drop more than once. There is some genuinely absorbing stuff here and I can't wait to hear what the experts have to say. It's bound to keep them busy for years to come!

There's not long left to see it now; if you're nearby, choose your visiting time carefully but go if you can!

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