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Museum exhibition looks at the role of the canal and railway in Grantham

Projection, Grantham Museum EMN-150227-165411001
Projection, Grantham Museum EMN-150227-165411001

An exhibition in Grantham will focus on the importance of the canal and railways to the town.

Grantham Museum’s exhibition is called ‘Getting Grantham Moving - how the canal and railway changed our town’. It will start on March 3,

Working with a number of local organisations, the museum has compiled the stories of the canal and railway, the men who built them, and how they changed the town forever.

The team at the Museum has worked with Grantham College, Grantham Canal, The Canal and River Trust, Grantham Library, ‘Return to Grantham’ and the Railway Society to research the story and bring it to life.

The exhibition includes a number of items not seen by the public before, including the plans for the first railway, mail saved from the Great Railway Accident in 1906, and canal costumes and artefacts.

For the first time, Year 2 students on the BTec Level 3 Extended Diploma Digital Design & Graphics at Grantham College have worked with Grantham Museum to design the display panels for the exhibition.

Supported by Course Leader Digital Design & Graphics David Thomas, the students have gained real life design experience on this challenging project.

There will be a number of events associated with the exhibition, including family craft sessions, talks and demonstrations. The first event is a Reminiscence Day in association with the Grantham Canal Society and Canal and River Trust on Saturday, March 12, from 11am to 3pm. It is a free drop-in session

Christine Robbins, Exhibitions Director, said: “Getting this exhibition together has been hard work, but it’s been a community effort which is great. Working with the Graphics students has been a real bonus - we’ve always had strong links with Grantham College, but this is new, and it’s been fascinating seeing them interpreting the design brief we gave them.

“Until we started researching I’d never realised what a staggering achievement the canals and railways were. The canal was started in 1792 - at a time when the main tools available were pickaxes and shovels. The work the navvies did was amazing! I get tired digging a hole to plant a tree - just imagine having to out dig 12 tons of ‘muck’ a day - no wonder they got roaring drunk at the end of the day...”

The museum will display historic photographs and will be adding some canal themed dressing-up clothes and hats for the exhibition. The museum would like to display railway items as well. If anyone has a railway hat or jacket they could donate contact the Museum on 01476 568783, or drop in.

Rosemary Richards, Grantham Canal said: “We’re delighted to have worked with Grantham Museum to help plan this exhibition. It provides opportunities to interest people in our beautiful canal, its rich heritage and our efforts to maintain and restore it.”

Dave Thomas, Course Leader Digital Design & Graphics Grantham College, said: “I would like to thank Grantham Museum for giving my year two students the opportunity to work on a real design project that is both challenging and exciting. The students were able to use this project to cover several of the units working towards their Btec qualification. They have learnt a lot about real life design and its pressures. I would particularly like to thank Tristen Thorpe for all the extra work she has put in to make this project such a success. I look forward to the opening of the exhibition I’m sure it will be a great success and I hope we will get to work with Grantham Museum again.”

The exhibition opens on Thursday, March 3, and continues until Saturday, September 3. Entry is free. The museum is open from Thursday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm.


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