Sunday, February 02, 2014

Museum of Lakeland Life

Winter finally seems to have caught up with us, and the weather the last few days has been horrible.  Snow on Friday, and horizontal sleet blown in the teeth of a screaming gale yesterday.  Finding something to do outdoors was impossible, so we drove into Kendal to spend some time at the Museum of Lakeland Life and Industry.  We've tried to go a couple of times before, only to find it was closed.  This time we were in luck, and thoroughly enjoyed the visit. 

The museum is tucked away down a side alley near to the Abbot Hall art gallery, and is a lot bigger on the inside than it looks from the outside, with galleries dedicated to various industrial activities of the past.  These include the obvious - farming and mining - but also the more surprising, like the manufacture of Kendal Mint Cake and the local prevalence of the Arts & Crafts movement in venues like the Keswick School of Industrial Arts, and The Spinnery in Bowness.

All in all, it was fascinating.  We picked up snippets of information on all sorts of local businesses, crafts, and ways of life, and the displays were informative but also lots of fun, with everything from a replica mine adit to a Victorian chemist's shop to explore.

The only downside was a lack of heating.  With the wind blasting through every gap in the windows, it was distinctly chilly inside, which perhaps made the 19th century farmhouse bedroom, kitchen and parlour more authentic, but also turned us the colour of woad!

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