Saturday, 8 October 2011

Normanton Church Museum

We've just returned from spending a few days in Oakham, the county town of Rutland, deep in the heart of Middle England, and a couple of miles from Rutland Water. It was very pleasant, the people were very friendly, and we had a good time behaving like tourists. We went down to the reservoir a couple of times, and on one occasion visited the Normanton Church Museum, which was originally a medieval church to Saint Matthew partially rebuilt in the eighteenth century, and saved from the the waters by raising the floor by ten feet, waterproofing the walls and building a stone embankment around it. From the outside, it's extremely photogenic, and has become the most famous landmark on the reservoir. However, on the inside, it is the worst museum I've ever been in. There is literally nothing in it. Literally nothing. The entrance fee is £2.20, and for that you get to watch a video made in the early 1970s, full of  wide lapels and with a laughable soundtrack, and there's a few grubby boards blue-tacked onto the wall which are too dull to read. What I thought was the only exhibit turned out to be a hammer to use to break the glass in case of emergency, and the only other thing in there of any interest was a female skeleton dating from the Saxon period, but since she wasn't in the museum part of the building, I guess that doesn't count. Poor woman - she'd no doubt hoped to spend her afterlife in the anonymous company of whatever gods she believed in, and now she was on display in a third-rate heritage visitor attraction.

I just wanted to smash the glass case, steal the bones, and give them a decent burial.

No comments:

Post a Comment