Wonders of the Peak at the Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

Gallery 1 houses the new Wonders of the Peak exhibition

Gallery 1 houses the new Wonders of the Peak exhibition - Credit: Archant

Wonders of the Peak – a new attraction and digital experience – was officially opened recently at Derbyshire County Council’s Buxton Museum and Art Gallery.

County Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Strategic Leadership, Culture and Tourism, Councillor Barry Lewis, welcomed the Duke of Devonshire who opened the refurbished galleries and launched the new digital experience.

The new attraction is the culmination of over 10 years of planning and gathers together the museum’s collection of 1,200 Peak District artefacts, collected over 125 years, illuminating Derbyshire’s geology, archaeology, history and art. Highlights include the first Blue John window to be made in 150 years, the Blue John Ridley chalice, the Buxton coin hoard, the Beeston Tor Hoard with its Viking jewellery and jadeite axe and the Ashford Black Marble collection. The museum’s photographic archive, which covers more than 150 years, is also projected on a large screen. Exhibits also appear on a splendid Wonders of the Peak website, which allows worldwide access to the collections with 211 ‘wonders’ online that reveal fascinating information on the landscape and history of the county.

At the official opening, Cllr Lewis said: ‘It was wonderful to be at the official opening and see first-hand the results of all the hard work, commitment and vision of everyone involved, including staff and volunteers. I would like to thank all the organisations that gave financial support, advice and expertise to the project, and for the trust they put in us to get this right. It was a proud day for the county council and I am confident that the improvements carried out will make the Buxton Museum and Art Gallery a “must-see” attraction for tourists, really boosting the local area.’

Derbyshire County Council helped fund the £1.5m redevelopment, with support from The Heritage Lottery Fund, The Wolfson Foundation, Arts Council England, the Paul Mellon Foundation for the Study of British Art, the Art Fund, The Friends of Buxton Museum and many other supporters.

Ros Westwood, Derbyshire Museums Manager, noted that the museum was established as a free library and museum in 1873, which means that next year it will be celebrating its 125th anniversary!

Visit Buxton Museum on Terrace Road or view the new digital Wonders of the Peak experience at www.wondersofthepeak.org.uk

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