Chertsey Museum, Chertsey, Surrey KT16 8AT

Chertsey Museum is the local history museum for the Borough of Runnymede with many fine archaeological weapons and a nationally significant costume collection.

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine April 2010

Chertsey Museum

The Cedars, 33 Windsor Street, Chertsey KT16 8AT: 01932 565764Open: Tuesday to Friday, 12.30-4.30pm; and Saturday, 11am-4pm Curator: Emma Warren

What is the museum best-known for?Chertsey Museum is the local history museum for the Borough of Runnymede with many fine archaeological weapons and a nationally significant costume collection.

Tell us your favourite local history story...I recently spoke to an elderly lady in Addlestone who used to work in the darts factory there during World War II. She and her colleagues used to write letters to hide in the boxes of darts, as they were sent to the front to entertain the troops, and quite often the soldiers would write back.

Which is your favourite item in the collection? It would have to be a rare tenth century Viking sword (pictured) that was found in gravel pits near Thorpe Park. Whether it was dropped in battle or left as an offering, we’ll never know, but it is fantastic to imagine the type of person who would have swung it.   …and the strangest? A small rectangular black silk wig bag with silk tape drawstring at the top. Wig bags were part of formal dress for men, and were designed to be tied around the ‘cue’ or ponytail of a wig.