Report: Heritage Pop Up Open Day 17 April 2010
Location and timings
Open from 10 am until 4pm on Saturday April 17 2010, the Heritage Pop Up shop is situated near Grade II listed The Old Still Pub at the top of the Westgate Arcade, an area of local historic importance, within the Queensgate Shopping Centre. It falls within the City Centre Conservation Area. The Heritage Pop up has been in use as shop display for the local heritage attractions since January 2010, when the Old Still was taken on under license from the Museum. On April 17 it was opened to the public as interactive ‘drop-in’ space focusing on the heritage of the Old Still itself.
The day was promoted by Peterborough City Council on their website and in press releases, and on the ‘Friends of the Old Still’ Facebook page.
Alice Kershaw, Heritage Regeneration Officer, Opportunity Peterborough and Stuart Orme, Historic Interpretation Manager, Peterborough Museum, were on hand to speak to visitors about the exhibition, the heritage of the city and ways to get involved.
There was an exhibition on the back wall and in the interior space which consisted of information from English Heritage (EH) The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and the local Heritage Attractions Group (HAG).
Four panels listing the history of the Old Still pub, area and the people who have worked within and owned the building were on display.
The back wall was covered in articles, photos and records. This was provided by the Peterborough Pub Archive and the Peterborough Archives, with help from Steve Williams and Richard Hillier respectively. Information on the building itself and its more recent history came from the archives and also from the Peterborough City Council Conservation Officers records.
Alongside this Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery provided some of the archaeology that came from the Cumbergate area over the last fifteen years, under protective casing.
Total number of visitors over the day = 95
Of note were a group from the Workers Educational Association on a tour of the city centre, several local CAMRA members and pub historians, a local English Heritage staff member, and many members of the 1990’s ‘Save our Still’ campaign, who identified themselves on the photos on the wall. Many people stayed for a considerable amount of time for such a small space, spending at least twenty minutes examining the panels, archive information and artefacts. The capacity of the space was about ten people at maximum.Outcomes
There was a knock on effect to The Old Still arts space itself, and reciprocal visitors between the Museum and the Pop Up.
There was a clear interest in the Old Still and in the city centre itself, and several people, roughly 20, had specifically come into town that day to see the Pop Up. It is a type of interpretation that could be rolled out for other buildings if there was vacant display space within or around them, and shows the appetite for heritage within Peterborough.