Students take over Henley’s River & Rowing Museum

Last Friday (20 November), year 9 students from The Langley Academy worked as Curators, Marketing Managers and Audience Development Officers at the River & Rowing Museum. The students received mentoring from Museum staff to develop and market a mini-exhibition focussed on Paralympic and adaptive rowing. This theme supported their GCSE PE studies.

The takeover day ran as part of the National Takeover Day programme, organised by the Children’s Commissioner and promoted to heritage organisations through Kids in Museums. The aim behind the Day is to encourage organisations to invite children and young people into their organisations to ‘takeover’ their roles and be involved in decision making.

Helen Cook, Head of Learning at the Museum, said that the day allowed for the students to gain useful workplace skills and make a meaningful contribution to the life of the Museum.

“The River & Rowing Museum is always looking for ways to engage with young people, and the takeover day was an incredible opportunity for us all to gain a better understanding of how young people interact with museums,” Ms Cook said.

“By giving the students meaningful roles in curating, marketing and audience development, we can gain an insight into what young people think a modern museum should be.”

The Langley Academy students were split into three groups and rotated through Curatorial, Marketing and Audience Development roles to create a mini-exhibition in the foyer of the Museum. The culmination of the day came when students were met by the Mayor of Henley-on-Thames, Councillor Miss L. M. Hillier, who viewed the exhibition and talked to students. The exhibition will be available to view in the foyer of the Museum until 4 December 2015.