All talks and trips have been cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
We are hoping this is a postponement of activities and we hope to run the talks and trips we have planned as soon as it is safe to do so.
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After six and a half years at Swindon Museum and Art Gallery, Curator Sophie Cummings has made a huge impact on the place, with regular changeovers of exhibitions both in the downstairs and upstairs galleries, there have been reasons for regular return visits. The Friday lunchtime talks have proved very popular and given people insights into works they might have otherwise not had.

I know a lot of other things went on behind the scenes and lots of others contributed to the recent successes at the museum, but I was concerned when I heard that Sophie was leaving because of the huge positive impact she had made. There was a card to sign and donations were made towards a present of garden tokens and a hamper from Dapaolo  Cafe and Delicatessen also featured in Angela’s blog.
We got together today for afternoon tea to give Sophie the card, tokens and present. Lots of Friends turned up, and I thanked Sophie for the high standard of exhibitions  and positive impact she has made. Sophie gave a speech thanking us, and ended with a piece from the Advertiser in 1989 when Sophie visited a bicycle exhibition. I took a few photos, starting with this one, where Sophie could be giving a lunchtime talk:

Refreshments included a Victoria sponge cake made by my daughter Helen, and some scones with jam and cream, accompanied by cups of tea.

 Here’s a photo of the Dapaolo hamper

 and a few general photos of those who came to say goodbye

 It was a lovely event, it was great that so many people could come along

 a couple more views of Sophie during her speech

 and here’s Sophie holding up the newspaper cutting

The newspaper article with a lovely photo of Sophie in the museum…

…and interestingly on the reverse of the photo is a piece about Steam, a second national railway museum for Swindon. With this thought ‘Swindon is looking to tourism as one means of increasing its prosperity. There is still a long way to go before the town will be in a position to rival some of its more historic neighbours.’

Katie Ackrill, newly appointed Engagement Officer seen below..

…and Tracy and Sophie

I took this photo from the museum’s Facebook page.

Yes it was an emotional event. Good luck Sophie, and thank you for all you have contributed over the last 6 and a half years.

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