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Director’s Blog – August 2021

Katherine McAlpine, Director of the Brunel Museum, stands outside the Museum.

Katherine McAlpine

It felt amazing to open our doors an extra day of the week in August – the first time we’ve been open more than 2 days a week since last year! We hosted an exhibition by Accelerate students, who visited us in December as part of their course. It was wonderful to see the students work displayed in the Tunnel Shaft, and we’re excited to welcome them back next year. While we’ll be returning to weekend opening from September, we’re hoping to open more days for October half-term so watch this space!

This month we released a statement about the actions we’re taking to be more sustainable: from decarbonizing the museum and using renewable energy across the museum, to working with our partners to make sure everything onsite meets the highest ethical and sustainable standards, to using our platform to talk about how the story of Marc and Isambard’s engineering problem solving might help us solve the climate emergency. We’d love to hear your thoughts about what else we could or should be doing.

23 August marked Slavery remembrance Day, a day which commemorates the 1791 Haitian Revolution. The Museum is looking to explore its links with the transatlantic slave trade. In another blog, I write about drawing out those threads, but I’m very interested in hearing from anyone who can help us explore further.

To top off what has been a fantastic month, our online escape room Tunnelling through Time got us shortlisted at the Southwark business Awards for Business Pivot of the Year. Like our collaborators Deadlocked, when your used to delivering face to face activity, switching to digital can seem a bit daunting – but we’re all really proud of what we’ve achieved and its great the judges have seen that too!

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