Breaking New Ground

Reconnecting People with The Brecks

(c) Ancient House Museum

(c) Ancient House Museum

Connecting the Landscape with its Archives

This project’s aim was to introduce new audiences to collections and archives which will illustrate the distinctive story of the Brecks. Using objects not normally on public display, new exhibitions were created to help people understand heritage and how objects and documents can help inform present and future management of the landscape.

The project engaged a wide range of audiences including the general public, families, school children, under-5s, after school clubs, and community groups through the production and display of the ‘Flint Rocks’ exhibition at Ancient House Museum in Thetford. The Teenage History Club and volunteers assisted with the research and production of the exhibition which ran from October 2015 – October 2016. The exhibition charted the geology of flint and how it was used by early humans in the Brecks as tools and weapons, through to artistic and modern day uses. Items on display included the incredibly skilfully knapped flint necklace and alphabets, as well as one of the flint panels rescued from Brandon library. Material was adapted for visiting school groups as part of the Museum’s educational offering and pop-up panels were designed and produced by older students to form part of the roaming display version of the Flint Rocks exhibition.

The publicity generated by the project led to a new relationship being created between Grimes Graves, the prehistoric flint mine site in the Brecks and the Obsidian Museum in Nagawa, Japan. Members of the Teenage History Club and museum staff travelled to Japan to deliver some flint artefacts and their Japanese counterparts visited Thetford for an official twinning ceremony on 14th July 2016 – a world first! Flint from the Brecks is now being incorporated in the walls of the new Nagawa Museum building

 

This project’s aim was to introduce new audiences to collections and archives which will illustrate the distinctive story of the Brecks. Using objects not normally on public display, new exhibitions were created to help people understand heritage and  how objects and documents can help inform present and future management of the landscape.

The project engaged a wide range of audiences including the general public, families, school children, under-5s, after school clubs, and community groups through the production and display of the ‘Flint Rocks’ exhibition at Ancient House Museum in Thetford. The Teenage History Club and volunteers assisted with the research and production of the exhibition which ran from October 2015 – October 2016. The exhibition charted the geology of flint and how it was used by early humans in the Brecks as tools and weapons, through to artistic and modern day uses. Items on display included the incredibly skilfully knapped flint necklace and alphabets, as well as one of the flint panels rescued from Brandon library. Material was adapted for visiting school groups as part of the Museum’s educational offering and pop-up panels were designed and produced by older students to form part of the roaming display version of the Flint Rocks exhibition.

The publicity generated by the project led to a new relationship being created between Grimes Graves, the prehistoric flint mine site in the Brecks and the Obsidian Museum in Nagawa, Japan. Members of the Teenage History Club and museum staff travelled to Japan to deliver some flint artefacts and their Japanese counterparts visited Thetford for an official twinning ceremony on 14th July 2016 – a world first! Flint from the Brecks is now being incorporated in the walls of the new Nagawa Museum building

Legacy

  • Pop up display panels and exhibition will be available to tour the Brecks for the foreseeable future.  
  • Remounting and framing of flint necklace which will return to Moyses Hall museum for display.  
  • Twinning and ongoing relationship formed with Obsidian Museum of Nagawa direct result of this project.
  • #FlintRocks on Twitter

“One of the unexpected elements of the overall project in 2016 was ‘East Meets West’, a Flint and Obsidian international conference which took place in July 2016 in Thetford. The event ran over three days with a day devoted to academic papers including reps from English Heritage and the British Museum and leading Japanese archaeologists. On the evening of 14th July there was a formal twinning, a world first, between Grimes Graves and an equivalent obsidian mine in Japan. Supported by English Heritage which operates Grimes Graves, we plan future cooperation and the project has helped us build links with the site.”

Oliver Bone – Ancient House Museum Curator

Gallery

Teenage History Club © Ancient House Museum
Teenage History Club © Ancient House Museum
Teenage History Club © Ancient House Museum
Teenage History Club © Ancient House Museum
Exhib
East Meets West
fantastic flint
Flint Rocks