Welcome to Radstock Museum News Update
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Radstock Museum News Update

Our subscriber list keeps on growing, welcome to new joiners and thank you for supporting us. 
One of our current priorities is to increase our pool of volunteers; we rely  almost totally on their input and we are always looking for people who can spare a few hours a week (at most) to keep the Museum going. Why not consider joining our team? You will meet new people, contribute to the Community, learn new skills and have fun, all in a nice warm environment with a well stocked tea shop! Check out the volunteer roles here.
Please encourage your friends to visit
our website and sign up too.
Let us know what you think about the News Updates, is there anything that we should add or remove? Our mailing address is at the bottom of this e mail. 
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Exhibitions - Your Last Chance!

Our current exhibition of embroidery and lace  "Threads Thro' Time" closes on Monday 30th May. It features a wide range of brilliant designs, some of which depict Remembrance.
The photo below illustrates one piece of work made especially for the Radstock exhibition by a group of ladies from the Avalon Embroiderers Guild based in Ashcott. They worked with a limited palette of colours, neutrals to emulate the sepia pictures of the period, and a splash of red. The background fabric for the project was scrunched up and dyed using tea to give a vintage appearance. The squares are 20cm deep-sided artist canvases and use a large number of techniques, including machine and hand embroidery, burning edges of synthetic fabrics to create petals, stump work, photos and postcards printed onto handmade papers and applied and trapped pieces of fabric.
This is just one piece of hundreds on display at the Museum until Monday 30th May. Many groups have contributed to this wonderful exhibition, including Embroidery Experiences (Chilcompton), Frome and District Embroiderers Guild, Avalon Embroiderers Guild, Bath Embroidery Group, Irving Embroideries, Vine Embroidery and Heather Kendon (lace).

S & D Railway Trust Exhibition

From 17 June to 17 July the Museum will be hosting a mobile exhibition compiled by the Somerset and Dorset Railway Trust which is based in Washford. The exhibition is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and celebrates the 50th anniversary of the closure of the S&D Railway in March 1966. There is a possibility that we may also have a working model railway on display as well.
To celebrate this anniversary we have two new books in the Museum Shop 
The Somerset and Dorset Railway through time by Steph Gillett (£14.99) is a wonderful collection of photographs of the S & D railway in operation, after abandonment and during the present day.

Somerset and Dorset Swansong by Bob Bunyar (£14.95) is the result of extensive research uncovering many interesting stories, pictures and photographs of the S & D.


A Victorian gas lamp has recently been erected in the Memorial Garden opposite Radstock Museum in Waterloo Road. The lamp was acquired some twenty years ago and installed at the Museum’s original site at Barton Meade. When the Museum moved to its current location in the former Market Hall, it was found that the lamp was so firmly entrenched in concrete that volunteers were unable to shift it. However, when Barton Meade was sold late last year, the Town Council kindly offered to provide the necessary machinery to lift the lamp and store it until it could be relocated. 
The lamp was cast by D.Evans of Llandaff (near Cardiff) in 1899, but sadly we have no idea how it arrived in Radstock from South Wales and whether it was ever installed and used to light the local streets.
Fossil Hunt With A Difference!
Every year the Museum runs a fossil hunt for children on the local batch, and that will go ahead as usual later in the year on a date to be announced. However, two local geologists are planning a fossil hunt on an entirely different scale early in September on a site adjacent to the old Broadway clay pit, between Clandown and Paulton. The photo below shows a preliminary core sample from the site. An excavation up to 15 metres deep and 30 metres long will cut through the Lower Jurassic clays, known as Charmouth Mudstone and hopefully yield a diverse range of fossils, including star-fish, crinoids, and ammonites, for which the site was noted in the 1930s. Whilst the clay pit was working, 1926 to 1939, supplying clay to the North Somerset Brick and Tile Works in Welton, a large collection of fossils was passed to the museum in Bath, but was unfortunately destroyed during the WW2 bombing raids. Finds will be on display at Radstock Museum and there will be opportunities to visit the site and participate in the largest fossil hunt the region has ever seen. More details will be announced nearer the date.

Five Arches Rambles

Our volunteer webmaster, actually her name is Jill, has been reviewing some of the website pages with a view to improvements. She has noticed that the Five Arches Rambles page is out of date.
Is there anybody amongst our supporters who has a complete set of Five Arches Journals (or who could come into the Museum) and who would be interested in checking through the Rambles so far listed and adding the most recent ones from Issues published in 2014 -2016? These can then be published on the website.
You don't need to be good with a computer; a pencil and paper list would be absolutely great. Jill can do the rest.
If you are a local rambler and you would like to write a few words about your recent Rambles from the Five Arches Journal we would be able to publish your 'reports' in this newsletter or on our Facebook page as long as they are compatible with the size limits on these media.
Contact Jill on if you are able to help us.


We have just received delivery of a new book in the Museum Shop - Camerton Parish, Somerset: A Step Back in Time by Julieann Biggs £14.99. This book is packed with photographs, maps and documents illustrating the fascinating history of Camerton, once a strong mining community, full of lovely characters and wonderful buildings.

Another new addition in the shop is RADCO 1868 - 1993 by George Donkin £4.00 - this book provides a wonderful opportunity to go down memory lane.

There's also a new edition of The Days of King Monmouth by Ralph Mitchard with more colour pictures but still the same price of £6.00. This book tells the story of the Duke of Monmouth’s ill-fated journey of rebellion from his arrival in the West Country at Lyme Regis, via Keynsham, Bath, Norton St Philip, and Frome, to his eventual execution in Tower Hill.

And whilst the Threads Thro Time exhibition is on we have a selection of embroidery greetings cards, postcards and embroidery kits for sale, as well as some secondhand books on sewing, embroidery and tapestry. 

5 Arches Journal 

The latest issue of Five Arches – Issue 84: Spring 2016 is now available from the Museum shop priced £3.50.


The Science in Radstock and Bygone Days talk series are now over until the Autumn. 

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