Our series of “Talking About…” events earlier this year was a great success. We would like to thank everyone who brought us information, objects and photographs, helped us make connections or found time to talk. The material from research, conversations and hours spent in our stores will enable us to enrich our interpretation plan with accurate information, stories of real people and fantastic displays.
Film is proving to be a particularly valuable resource. For example we have been given fascinating footage of vessels being built, launched and sailed on Windermere during the 1950s – and had the privilege of hearing first-hand what that involved. Archival material relating to local businesses has reinforced our understanding of the role that Windermere played both nationally and internationally – whether it’s information about the export of Windermere vessels by local boatbuilders, Anchorage Ltd, or photographs and brochures that record the development of Mallinson’s Motor Tours as they catered for visiting tourists
Early advertising material perfectly illustrates the transition of lakeside houses from indulgent private homes to luxury hotels. This elaborate advertisement for the Belsfield, one of the very first places in Windermere to boast electricity, says it all.
It was particularly moving to receive on loan the diving suit and equipment used by Bernard Frazer, a member of the 1962 team that salvaged SL Dolly from Ullswater, and to have the chance to read extracts from his dive diaries and talk to his family. These personal connections bring our collection to life.