Month: May 2013
This months Collection Bites will focus on the fantastically diverse botany collection and will be lead by its Curator Rachel Webster. As June 5th is World Environment Day Rachel will take its theme of Think•Eat•Save, focusing on food sustainability, sharing stories about the objects from the botanical collections which are used to promote sustainability and their links with the Museum allotment project and the Living Worlds gallery.
Collection Bites is a lunchtime conversation series which invites a different speaker each month to take a closer look at objects in the Museum. It is part of the work of the Collections Study Centre which is open to everyone wanting to carry out research, draw or just get a little bit closer to the collection.
More information can be found here: http://www.museum.manchester.ac.uk/aboutus/services/collectionsstudycentre/
To make an appointment please email firstname.lastname@example.org
We have had a a new display installed in the Museum foyer this week. It was curated by the Manchester Museum’s Senior Youth Board and it reflects their interpretation of our Collecting Trees theme. Called ‘Northwest to Northwest; Forest to Metropolis’, this installation is inspired by the historic trade in red cedarwood from British Columbia to the Manchester via Canada Docks in Salford.
They have used this theme to make links between the Living Cultures and Zoology collections through wooden objects of Native American art and the animals represented therein. We’d love to hear what you think about it; if you’re visiting soon, please leave us a comment on our special postcards.
Today the city centre-based members of the University’s Biodiversity Working Group hit the road to head out of the city and into Cheshire to hold a meeting at Jodrell Bank. Although home to the University of Manchester’s Centre for Astrophysics, the world famous Lovell telescope and a Discovery centre to explore the science of space, we were heading there to talk to Becky Burns, the Head of Gardens and Interpretation.
After all, it’s only fair that we should make the effort to visit Becky in her workplace from time to time instead of asking her to travel to us for meetings. The Biodiversity Working Group meets to discuss opportunities to increase the biodiversity on the campus of the University of Manchester and at about 35 acres, the Jodrell Bank arboretum is one of the University’s biodiversity hotspots. The arboretum holds two national Collections of Sorbus (whitebeam) and Malus (ornamental crab apples) trees, and with the late spring this year it is just about ready to burst into a profusion of blossom.
Visiting Jodrell wasn’t the only excitement of the day however, as this week the University was loaned a Nissan Leaf electric car and we were lucky enough to be allowed to use it to travel between sites. Qutie a number of Manchester’s buses are now hybrid diesel-electric, but this was my first experience of a fully electric car and it was pretty comfortable as well as having very green credentials. It was also just so quiet!
Earlier this year we posted a photograph of a portrait we found in a box of paperwork at the back of the herbarium. It clearly shows a Victorian botanist – but which one? We speculated that it might look like Richard Buxton, who was a very interesting and impressive self-taught naturalist, but we now have another contender.
Christine Walsh (one of our dedicated team of herbarium volunteers) came across a picture of Joseph Evans (1803 – 1874), botanist and herbal doctor from Boothstown. There’s a biography of him on this site, and I have to say, he looks very like our mystery man. What do you think?