News & Opportunities

Here you will find all the latest news and opportunities from around the region and nationally. Just click on the 'show tags' button on the left under the calendar to filter the information to your requirements.

Opportunity for Kent & Medway museums to participate in a new family friendly passport scheme

In late 2013, Maidstone Museum approach a group of smaller museums to participate in the new ‘Time Traveller’ passport scheme, aimed at school children as part of their Museums & Schools Programme.  

The impact the ‘Time Traveller’ passport scheme had on particularly, Ashford Borough Museum and Chiddingstone Castle, was significantly noticeable – feedback to these smaller museums has been positive.  However, limitations linked to the Museums & Schools Programme meant only school classes were eligible to receive a passport, where anecdotal evidence suggests there is a wider market for a family friendly passport that can be given to every child that enters the museum.    

Unfortunately, the scheme ceased at the end of March 2015, and now some of the smaller museums are planning to develop it into a new passport, with an initial core group of museums:

  • Ashford Borough Museum (lead partner)
  • Maidstone Museum
  • Brook Agricultural Museum
  • Chiddingstone Castle

These museums are now looking to recruit more museums in Kent & Medway to sign up to the scheme to be part of 'The Wheels of Time'.  In brief, the scheme will start towards the end of July ready for the school holiday period.  All participating museums will be provided with a batch of passports and will be encourages to give one to every child entering the museum (whether they are with a school group, their family or Scouts/Girl Guides).  The child will receive a sticker for their passport upon their first visit, and will be encouraged to visit another participating museum to receive a second sticker.  Once the passport is complete, they will receive a goody bag.  The participating museums do not need to provide any special activities, just continue to offer what you already do.  The object is to promote the local history to the public and encourage the next generation of the importence of their heritage. 

Funding for this has been secured through a South East Museum Development Programme Micro-Project application (now known as Development Grants) and will cover the costs of:

  • printing
  • badge making materials
  • stamps and stickers
  • goody bag materials
  • posters
  • advertising and design costs
  • training where required on desired topics

A meeting for the current core group of museums has been arranged for Thursday 23rd April at the Ashford Borough Council offices from 10.30am to discuss the key next steps.  The group are keen to extend the opportunity to as many other museums and heritage sites as possible.  If you wish to come to the above meeting would you please inform Mike Boulding, the Chair of Ashford Borough Museum on mike.boulding@outlook.com.