10th December 2015
Making the best of Auntie Clara’s drawers
Anne Houson writes:
Most people have an ‘Auntie Clara’ who safeguards family heirlooms for future generations. But just how safely is she keeping your family treasures?
On a wet day four of us from Clement’s Hall Local History Group visited the Discovery Centre in Leeds and were made aware of the ravages that time and the environment can wreak on the contents of Auntie Clara’s drawers! Beetles, damp, weevils, daylight, plastics and even well meaning DIY repair can seriously damage your family’s documents and artefacts.
The Discovery Centre in Hunslett, http://www.leeds.gov.uk/museumsandgalleries/Pages/discoverycentre/Access-at-Leeds-Museum-Discovery-Centre.aspx contains all the artefacts that Leeds City Council don’t have currently on public display – all carefully curated now – but many suffering from poor conservation by previous owners. Have you ever seen a stuffed polar bear that’s leaking Plaster of Paris? It’s not a pretty sight!
The free talk and generous lunch were part of Leeds’ ‘Being Human’ festival in November and delivered by experts from the Family Archive project research team at http://blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/familyarchive/ which is worth a look and, while you’re there, get Auntie Clara to look too!