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People Power at Brooklands Museum


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Presentation on the contribution of volunteers to the museum

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People Power at Brooklands Museum

  1. 1. People Power: Working with volunteers to rehome our collection Andrew Lewis Collections and Exhibitions Manager
  2. 2. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM • Introduction to Brooklands and our collection • The collections move project • Working with volunteers • Some audience participation! 38 44 20 People Power
  3. 3. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM The first purpose-built racing circuit in the world • Home of the first British Grand Prix • Site of three World Land Speed Records and over 200 other international records • Female racing drivers from 1908 • Motorcycle racing from 1908 • Britain’s first massed start cycle race Brooklands
  4. 4. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM Largest centre of aircraft production in Europe • Centre of pioneering aviators, including Britain’s second public flying display, first flying school and first loop-the-loop • Over 18,000 aircraft built between 1907 and 1984 • 14,000 people employed at its peak • Manufacturers based there included Sopwith, Bleriot, Martinsyde, Vickers, Hawker, & BAC Brooklands
  5. 5. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM • Collecting began in 1985 before the museum was open to the public • Large volumes of material was ‘rescued’ from the BAe factory as it closed down • Includes aircraft, cars, motorcycles, bicycles, social history and archive • In 2015, the aviation technical archive alone was described as ‘bigger than the average county archive’ • 800 registered volunteers, with around 200 actively working with the collections, 30 of which directly on archives. Brooklands Museum Collection
  6. 6. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM • The existing archive store building was in poor condition and no longer fit for purpose • The Re-engineering Brooklands project gave an opportunity for a new store on the other side of our 32-acre site. • Larger footprint with more efficiently planned storage • Gave us the opportunity to audit and improve our collections documentation as items were moved Collections Move Project
  7. 7. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM • Check existing documentation for accuracy • Identify & document previously undocumented items • Take reference photographs for MODES • Clean objects to avoid contaminating new environment • Repack vulnerable objects • Identify collections hazards Collections Inventory & Audit
  8. 8. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM 20 volunteers and equivalent of 1 staff member have processed: • 10,000 plan drawings • 900 aircraft manuals • 600 items of costume • 1400 archival boxes …so far! What have we achieved?
  9. 9. BROOKLANDSMUSEUM.COM Experience on this project has shown us: • Some tasks aren’t for everyone • Use your team’s strengths • Environment matters • Flexible scheduling is essential for some • Understand their motivations for volunteering • Invest time in training • Keep an eye on consistency • Appreciate your volunteers! Working with volunteers