Community Treasure Chest

We have enjoyed a busy and thought-provoking week, since our last posting from South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre.

Monday saw us visit Crewkerne and Chard Museums with our volunteers for an autumn volunteer outing. This was a rewarding day, to see how two South Somerset museums are run, cared for and the considerable collections and activities conducted to promote and encourage interest in the community. Refreshments were gratefully appreciated and a particular thank you to Janet Harris at Crewkerne for allowing us to visit on a day when Crewkerne Museum is normally closed and to Roger Carter, John Allen and ‘Tea Team’ at Chard for their welcome. Lunch in Crewkerne was great too!

Tuesday saw a completely unexpected visit from a member of the public asking for an axe to be identified. Only last week, we held our autumn Finds Afternoon, so staff contacted the Somerset Finds Liaison Officer for any thoughts. One contact suggested was the Ethnographic Officer at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum (RAMM) in Exeter, Devon.

This was their very helpful reply:

“It is a rather common farm axe which is still employed today for chopping and carving wood; it’s not as nice as other axe types that have been used. This was either brought to the UK in the 60s/ 70s or it was made here.

Most African axes are really well made. The iron is usually of high quality and the wood handles are sometimes nicely carved. This example is a roughly made axe but one that can do the job effectively.”

We also enjoyed visits to CHAC to help with an essay on Museums and their function and a visit from a Martock couple, one of which grew up in Yeovil, so was delighted by our Walk Books of Yeovil in the 1960s.

Today sees our first loan of the Imperial War Museum “Battle of the Somme” DVD to Milborne Port History Society for a screening on Monday 17th October 2016 – feedback next time!

The farm axe brought in for identification

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