Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Peter Rabbit leaps off the page at museum

Peter Rabbit leaps off the page at museum

THIS summer, families visiting Henley’s River and Rowing Museum will be in for a real treat as Peter Rabbit and his friends take over the place!

Bunnies will be bouncing all over the museum, as Peter Rabbit hops, skips and jumps right off the page in an interactive exhibition about Beatrix Potter’s most famous creation.

Generations of children have grown up with Peter Rabbit, from reading the original tales to watching the current TV animation.

The exhibition — entitled Peter Rabbit: Mischief and Mayhem — looks at Peter across the ages, and includes original artwork, first editions and early Peter Rabbit merchandise.

The exhibition spreads throughout the building and in the family gallery on the first floor of the museum, visitors will be able to help Mrs Tiggy-Winkle hang up the laundry or visit Mrs Rabbit in her burrow!

Children can dress up as Peter, curl up with a book in the story corner or enjoy planting carrots in Mr McGregor’s garden.

Families can explore the outside space with a special trail and venture into Mr McGregor’s garden for sand and water play!

The museum has worked with a number of local schools who have been busy planting vegetable seeds for Mr McGregor’s garden.

Pupils and their class teachers visited the museum back in June to plant their seedlings and the resulting harvest will be donated to local foodbank the One Can Trust in the autumn.

As part of the exhibition, visitors to the museum can also enter a miniature letter-writing competition, and win exclusive Beatrix Potter prizes.

Peter Rabbit: Mischief and Mayhem has been supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, who generously awarded the museum a grant of more than £17,000.

Natalie Patel, head of collections and exhibitions, said: “We are really excited to be putting together such an exciting exhibition for our visitors. The beautiful illustrations by Beatrix Potter serve as the perfect backdrop to inspire children to unleash their creativity.

“We hope that visitors will enjoy our summer of family fun — there is so much to see and do! We are very grateful for the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund, which has enabled us to create a ‘Mr McGregor’s garden’ outside the museum to explore current environmental issues.

“The grant has also enabled us to include more activities for families and help Peter Rabbit come to life for the next generation.”

The exhibition runs until Sunday, September 24, but with the summer holidays getting under way each Friday until August 25 is a “Family Friday”.

A spokesman for the museum in Mill Meadows said: “Join us each Friday for a play picnic, bunny craft, dressing up and face painting. The cost is £2 per child.”

Looking ahead to Saturday, September 16, there will be a special lecture at the museum to accompany the exhibition. Titled “Beatrix Potter: Artist, Scientist, Conservationist”, this illustrated talk by Anney Harris, co-founder of the Beatrix Potter Society, covers all aspects of Beatrix Potter’s life, from her privileged upbringing in London to her Lake District home, examining this remarkable woman’s legacy and her impact on us all. The hour-long lecture starts at 11.30am. Tickets are £6 and booking is essential. Call the museum on (01491) 415600.

The River and Rowing Museum is open from 10am to 5pm daily. Annual passes are £11 for adults and £9 for children aged four and over. For more information, visit www.rrm.co.uk

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