Hampshire Cultural Trust

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This map pinpoints some of the most exciting cultural venues in Hampshire.

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The Renaissance Choir celebrates its 40th anniversary

Concert: “French Connection: Poulenc’s Gloria”.

St Peter's Church, Petersfield, Petersfield, GU32 3HS, Saturday 29th October 2016 at 7:30pm


The Renaissance Choir, conducted by Peter Gambie, will be bringing a gorgeous programme of classical music to St Peter's Church, Petersfield, on 29th October.

Besides performing a selection of selection of French and English choral music, including Poulenc’s skittish Gloria, the Choir will perform the second ever performance of a commission it made to mark its 40th anniversary to Hampshire-based composer Ian Schofield entitled "Stream of Life" containing poetry by Rabindranath Tagore.

The Renaissance Choir was honoured early last year by the Portsmouth-Based newspaper, The News, when it won Best Classical Music Act. Mentioned in the citation for the award was a performance during which the spell-bound audience was captivated by the choir’s sensuous sound and musicianship.

The Choir has a considerable reputation, delighting audiences across Europe with the blend and beauty of its sound.  Recent concert tours to Budapest (2006), Lisbon (2008), Krakow, Poland (2010), Santiago de Compostela, Spain (2014) and most recently in May this year to Rome have been highly successful.

For a programme not to be missed, the concert on Saturday 29th October begins at 7.30pm, and tickets are £12 (concessions £10, students £2). These are available by phoning 023 9247 5259, by visiting www.renaissancechoir.org.uk, or can be obtained on the door.





The Roger Brown model of Victorian Winchester is to be given a permanent home at Winchester City Museum.

Measuring over 15 feet and made up of 20 component parts, the impressive scale model is based on the first Ordinance Survey map of the city from 1873, and took former town planner Roger Brown nine years to create following his retirement from Hampshire County Council. Since its completion in the 1980s, the model has been on temporary display at a number of locations in and around Winchester, but this is the first time it has been given a permanent home.

The project is being championed by many prominent local supporters including travel writer and photographer, John Pilkington, who worked with Roger Brown in the Hampshire County Council planning office. He commented:

“Roger Brown was a warm and extremely generous man. The contribution he made to Hampshire’s towns and countryside was immense, but the model also shows his grasp of history and incredible eye for detail. People are going to be amazed and inspired!”

Although the project has received significant funding from Hampshire County Council, Winchester City Council and Winchester Town Forum, Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT), who operate Winchester City Museum, are launching a major campaign to raise further funds to secure the future of the model, and will be reaching out to local businesses and donors for their support.

After being in storage for a number of years, the model is undergoing extensive restoration by HCT’s highly-skilled conservation team, and will be brought to life by new digital interpretation. Along with the objects on display in the museum, the model will tell the story of Winchester, orientating visitors by taking them through the Victorian streets and introducing them to the city’s rich heritage from King Alfred to Jane Austen.

The ground floor of Winchester City Museum will undergo extensive refurbishment in two phases in order to accommodate the model. The ground floor of the museum will close to the public on Monday 3 October, with full closure from Monday 10 October, to allow conservators from HCT to remove current exhibits for conservation and storage during the refurbishment.

On Saturday 22 October, the museum will re-open to the public for the half-term holiday and Christmas period, with the galleries on the top two floors celebrating Winchester’s Roman and Iron Age past open to visitors as usual. The ground floor will be dedicated to Made in Hampshire, an HCT project which receives Arts Council England (ACE) funding. This pilot phase of the Made in Hampshire project will take the form of a pop-up shop, giving local makers and producers a platform to promote and sell their goods in the city during the festive period. The museum will close fully at the end of 2016 so that refurbishment work can be completed before the model is installed, with full re-opening planned for the end of March 2017.

Janet Owen, Chief Executive of Hampshire Cultural Trust, commented:

‘The Roger Brown model is a unique record of our city in Victorian times. Roger Brown completed the model in the 1980s after nine years of personal dedication, but, despite being on temporary display at a number of locations, a permanent site has never been found.

‘We are absolutely thrilled that we now have the opportunity to give this extraordinary work - made by a man with real vision and love for the heritage of Winchester - a permanent home in the heart of the community at the Winchester City Museum. The museum is the ideal place for the model to be housed, and combined with our exciting plans for the-design of the ground floor, which will incorporate objects from Jane Austen’s personal items to stories of the trades people of Winchester, we will be creating an exceptional visitor experience for local people and tourists alike.’

Details of how to donate to the Roger Brown model can be found at www.hampshireculturaltrust.org.uk/RogerBrownModel.






Healthwatch Hampshire is supporting the Better Life Chances team, part of Hampshire Cultural Trust, to help improve wellbeing and gather feedback of mental health users with the use of a Community Cash Fund (CCF) of up to £2,500. The feedback collected will be used to influence service providers and improve outcomes for local communities, particularly within mental health services.

The Better Life Chances team will focus on people with dementia and their carers, holding a series of sessions led by a poet who will use poetry to express personal experience of mental health services. The words and responses will be captured by the artist and brought together into poetry for Healthwatch Hampshire to share with service providers.

Over the past two years, Healthwatch Hampshire has funded nearly 30 projects, gathering feedback of service users from seldom heard groups. Their work has been recognised nationally, winning an award for ‘The value we bring to our community’ in June. This year, they are working on a smaller number of projects which focus specifically on mental health services. These projects have been picked to help improve mental health services for the groups.

Steve Manley, manager at Healthwatch Hampshire, says, “Our Community Cash Fund allows citizens to develop their own voice and, with our support, share their work, findings, recommendations and innovative projects with local commissioners and providers. We recognise the power of using skills, experience and existing networks of our communities throughout the county to harness their participation and involvement in health and social care related services.”



The Breamore Pail

A stunning new exhibition celebrating Hampshire’s glorious royal history opened on Saturday 3 September at the Willis Museum in Basingstoke.

Births, Battles and Beheadings, part of the county-wide Royal Blood programme for 2016, focusses on seven pivotal periods in Hampshire’s history. From the Iron Age through to the Anglo-Saxons, Tudors and Stuarts, each period is explored through interactives, specially commissioned costumes and a spectacular array of objects and artefacts, some of which will be on public display for the very first time.

Amongst those pieces which will make their public debut at the exhibition, are an elaborate roman buckle; a pendant which belonged to the influential Despenser family and which was found near Odiham and 120 silver coins hidden in a cottage in Dummer during the Civil War.

The exhibition will also feature the Alton Hoard, a collection of Iron Age coins and Roman jewellery on loan from the British Museum; the Monk Sherborne Buckle, one of the finest pieces of Anglo-Saxon craftsmanship to have been found in Hampshire, and a rare Byzantine pail discovered at Breamore, one of only three of its type in Britain.

Also on display will be eight costumes, representing the different historical periods, which have been made especially for the exhibition in a collaboration with theatre costume design students from Bournemouth University.

“We are absolutely thrilled to be staging this remarkable exhibition,” commented Janet Owen, Chief Executive Officer of the Hampshire Cultural Trust.

“It has given us a unique opportunity to showcase some of the spectacular objects found in Hampshire and which belong to both the Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council collections, which are cared for by Hampshire Cultural Trust.”

Births, Battles and Beheadings is part of Royal Blood: The fight for power in Hampshire, Hampshire Cultural Trust’s year-long, county-wide programme of exhibitions, performances and events, exploring the county’s long and illustrious royal history. Admission to the exhibition is free, and it can be seen at the Willis Museum from Saturday 3 September until Saturday 29 October, when it will move to the Gallery at Winchester Discovery Centre from Saturday 5 November.



Milestones Museum in Basingstoke has partnered with Fluid Motion Theatre Company to open a brand new weekly youth theatre for children aged 8-13.

The youth theatre is run by a professional theatre director who teaches children a wide range of skills from improvisation, to mime, puppetry and more. Children have the whole museum as their playground, allowing a brilliant opportunity for them to have fun and make theatre within the streets and amongst the vehicles and exhibits.

The group has only been running for one term and is already hugely popular, prompting a summer school during the holidays. The summer school, which ran from Tuesday 16 – Thursday 18 August, was themed around The Mystery of the Vanishing Queen. Using characters from the exhibition, the group used the trail to bring to life their own story, which took place in various locations around the museum and was performed to both an invited audience and the general public.

Leigh Johnstone, Artistic Director of Fluid Motion Theatre Company said ‘I am so excited about using Milestones to create drama with young people. The museum is already a huge, inspiring stage set and allows us to go on adventures that you wouldn’t normally get to do in a conventional youth theatre group.’

One parent who came to watch the summer school performance said ‘I cannot believe how much they have achieved in three days. The performance was excellent and really professional. My son has had so much fun.’

The Milestones Youth Theatre meets every Friday (during term time) from 3:30pm – 5:00pm and is open to children aged 8-13. The autumn term runs from Friday 9 September – Friday 16 December, and there is no session on Friday 28 October due to half term. The Christmas show will take place in on Saturday 17th December at 2:00pm. 

To find out more details, visit http://www.fluidmotiontheatre.co.uk/youth-theatre.



Image courtesy of the Museum of Army Flying

School children in North Hampshire are set to benefit from an £80,000 boost for local museum projects as part of Hampshire Cultural Trust’s Better Life Chances programme.

The funding, from Arts Council England and the Department for Education, will support sustainable relationships between qualifying schools and their local museums to enhance pupils’ education outside the classroom.

Aldershot Military Museum, Basing House and Andover Museum of the Iron Age, all operated and funded by Hampshire Cultural Trust, will develop curriculum-linked projects in order to engage with local schools and the wider community. 

The trust’s partner sites - Winchester Military Museums and the Museum of Army Flying - will also receive funding to deliver educational opportunities.

The cash windfall from Arts Council England and the Department for Education has been awarded to the ‘Reaching Out’ North Hampshire Museum Education Partnership in order to strengthen local networks for the future. 

Janet Owen, chief executive of Hampshire Cultural Trust, welcomed the cash injection for the project, commenting: “We are delighted to receive this funding which will enable our cultural venues to connect positively with schools, families and groups of vulnerable people across Hampshire.

“We have a fantastic wealth of museums in Hampshire, and we look forward to announcing further details of our projects which will help to change the lives of young people for the better.”




Andover has a long and fascinating history, but how much do local people really know about their town?

Actors from the Theatre of Dark Encounters will bring the town’s history alive over four days in August by taking people on a historical tour of the town to mark the official relaunch of the Andover Heritage Trail. The actors will be dressed in period costume and will share stories about how England’s peace with the Vikings was secured, how a scandal in the town’s workhouse led to the reform of the Poor Laws, and how the arrival of the railways affected people living and working in the town.

The tours are free and will take place on Friday 12, 19 and 26 August at 11.30am and 1.30pm and Sunday 21 August at 11am, 1pm and 3pm. They will last around 75 minutes and are suitable for ages eight and over. Tours start at Town Mills and finish at Andover Museum. Tickets must be booked in advance through The Lights Theatre box office or by calling 01264 368368.

The relaunch is part of Test Valley Borough Council’s Four Fun Fridays project, which will see a vibrant programme of street entertainment, live music, creative workshops and competitions for all the family to enjoy each Friday in August.

Leader of the Council, Councillor Ian Carr, said: “The tours will be informative and engaging and give a unique experience for locals, or visitors, to learn more about Andover. We hope they will give people, especially the younger audience, a rare insight into the lives of some of the inhabitants from years gone by when it was one of the most important coaching towns in the south.”

The relaunched Heritage Trail has been made possible through a Heritage Lottery Grant and a partnership between Test Valley Borough Council and Hampshire Cultural Trust.


BBC History Magazine's weekend festival is back this autumn for a fourth year running. This year’s festival sees a new historic setting in the centre of Winchester, with a tremendous line-up featuring some of the biggest names in popular history.

The history weekend is working with Hampshire Cultural Trust on the county’s big theme for 2016, Royal Blood, a year-long series of historical exhibitions, performances and events bringing Hampshire’s history life. The county has played host to many crucial moments in English history and the Royal Blood events have been planned to both excite and educate visitors about its rich and illustrious royal past.

Running from 7-9 October, the festival will this year be making is debut in Winchester. The ancient capital of England is steeped in Anglo-Saxon and medieval history, and one of the lecture venues will be the amazing 13th-century Great Hall. Speakers for the weekend include Antony Beevor, Dan Snow, Suzannah Lipscomb, Jonathan Dimbleby and Michael Wood amongst many more.

This fascinating weekend is a rare opportunity to hear from some of the world’s leading historians and authors on a range of topics from Richard III and The Norman Conquest, to the Last Royal Rebels and The Private Lives of the Tudors. There are also special events to enjoy such as The Historical Trips Debate, where four expert historians will debate the Second World War, as well as a fun H for History Quiz. For a full list of ticket prices, a talk programme and to book tickets please visit www.historyweekend.com/winchester.

The weekend will be running alongside the Royal Blood events schedule, which throughout the year will include gallery exhibits, re-enactments and outdoor performances to transport everyone back to the Hampshire’s past. For a full line up of Royal Blood activities please visit http://www.royalbloodhants.co.uk/.

Southampton City Art Gallery awarded £450,000 from Arts Council England

Southampton City Art Gallery awarded £450,000 from Arts Council England’s Museums Resilience Fund

Southampton City Art Gallery, along with its partner Hampshire Cultural Trust, has been awarded £450,000 to transform the quality of cultural experiences across the county and raise the profile of Southampton’s world class fine art collection.

Cllr Satvir Kaur, Cabinet member for Communities, Culture and Leisure at Southampton City Council said "I’m really delighted that Southampton City Art Gallery has been successfully awarded money from the Museums Resilience Fund. This exciting project, which will be run in conjunction with Hampshire Cultural Trust, will ensure many more people will get to enjoy the gallery’s outstanding collection. The city is quickly becoming one of the south coast’s cultural capitals, and this vote of confidence from Arts Council England is another major step forward."

Over the next 18 months, Southampton City Art Gallery will work with Hampshire Cultural Trust’s four flagship galleries in Hampshire - The Sainsbury Gallery, Basingstoke; The Gallery, Winchester Discovery Centre; Gosport Gallery; and St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery - to develop a bold and ambitious artistic programme.

Janet Owen, Chief Executive of Hampshire Cultural Trust said, "We are delighted that Arts Council England have awarded £450,000 towards delivery of this exciting vision for culture in Hampshire. We are looking forward to working in close partnership with Southampton City Council and other partners to bring great art to local people through vibrant gallery programmes in Basingstoke, Gosport, Lymington, Southampton and Winchester."

Announcing the award this morning, Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England, said: "This is an exciting scheme bringing together the galleries in Hampshire’s Flagship project to showcase some of the world class art held in Southampton City Art Gallery. Southampton City Art Gallery and Hampshire Cultural Trust are working together to raise the profile of top quality exhibitions and give more people the chance to enjoy them. These museums and galleries are looking to build a more secure and resilient future and we’re delighted to be supporting them through the Museums Resilience Fund."

We Are Here

We Are Here

Summer Arts College ran in July 2016 with a group of vulnerable young people aged 15-17 referred by Hampshire Youth Offending Team. The group took part in photography sessions with professionals from In Focus and poetry workshops with performance poet, Femi Martin; the project was held at the University of Winchester. The group were inspired to think about their place in the universe, from home to outer space. All individuals in the group grew in confidence, positive behaviour and creative expression. Four vulnerable young people gained Explore and Bronze Arts Awards.

One young person who has been a victim of abuse and has a challenging home life said: “This has been the best part of my rollercoaster and I don’t want it to stop…the course has kept me out of trouble, I feel I can achieve things…it has changed the way I feel about myself and the way I see others, it has been good for my confidence.”

A young man who is in the care system said: “I have been on a lot of projects but this is the best thing I’ve been on…this project has helped me step forward in my life, I have learnt that I can be mature and more confident…I want to go to college in September.”

The group of young people performed their final poems to an audience on Friday 29 July in the gallery café at Theatre Royal Winchester where an exhibition of their photographs is displayed until end of August 2016.  One audience member commented: “What an amazingly brave and talented group of young people who are all sure to set the world on fire in their own individual ways. Well done to you all.”

“A great sharing of poetry and images. Powerful and moving words. Glad to have supported the programme,” commented Peter Taylor, Strategic Manager, Artswork.

This project was managed by Hampshire Cultural Trust, in partnership with Hampshire Youth Offending Team. It was funded by a co-investment from Artswork and the Police & Crime Commissioner. The co-investment aims to realise a number of shared objectives including reducing antisocial behaviour, youth offending rates and supporting those who are vulnerable and at most risk through sustainable high quality arts and cultural programmes that will also have Arts Council England’s Quality Principles at their heart.

Pop in to see the exhibition at Theatre Royal Winchester before the end of August!



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