Brand new Stourbridge Glass Museum set to open on Saturday

The new Stourbridge Glass Museum

The brand new Stourbridge Glass Museum in High Street, Wordsley will officially open to the public on Saturday 9th April.

Unofficially dubbed ‘The People’s Museum’ in recognition of the support the project has generated, Stourbridge Glass Museum is the culmination of over a decade of work by the British Glass Foundation and its partners.

The project secures a new home for the Stourbridge Glass collection following the closure of Broadfield House Glass Museum in Kingswinford, where it was previously held. The new museum will also encompass the work of modern practitioners at an international level and will act as a focus for both the history and contemporary status of glassmaking.

Central to all of this will be the thousands of items comprising the Stourbridge Glass collection, examples of which will be displayed and interpreted on a rotational basis. Interpretation will be further enhanced by a range of interactive displays and hands-on opportunities in a working hot studio.

Developing the provenance of local glass and glassmaking will be showcased in programme of events including exhibitions, presentations, outreach, learning and other activities, all of which are designed to offer a comprehensive experience of glassmaking history and culture.

The creation of the museum on the iconic site of the former Stuart Crystal works has been made possible by the widespread support of a range of individuals and organisations, including the European Regional Development Fund, the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Dudley MBC and Complex Development Projects Ltd.

The opening day will showcase one of the finest collections of British and international glass from the past four centuries. The inaugural visiting exhibitor is Venessa Cutler with an exhibit entitled 'Journeys and Horizons'. A series of exhibitions by contemporary practitioners will include a presentation of work by supporters from the Contemporary Glass Society who are celebrating their 25th anniversary in 2022.

The opening will mark an ongoing celebration of Black Country heritage and contemporary glassmaking skills, all backed by a full programme of events, with opportunities to join us as a volunteer in promoting the vision. Mike Wood. MP for Dudley South, said:

"We are so proud of Wordsley and Stourbridge’s history as producers of the best glass in the world, and it is fantastic that people from far and wide will now be able to enjoy amazing examples of this heritage on display in the heart of our traditional glass-making quarter.

"The new museum doesn’t only celebrate our proud past, but also the living legacy of that industrial heritage that is kept alive by the exciting work done by today’s local craftsmen and artists.

"It has been a long road to get to this point, but Graham and the team have persevered and done an incredible job in turning this state-of-the-art museum from a dream into a reality that all lovers of glass can enjoy."

Graham Knowles, BGF Chairman, added: "This is a great day for Stourbridge in reinforcing its position as a centre of excellence for glass and glassmaking.

"We are indebted to the people of Stourbridge and beyond for having the faith in us to deliver the vision in the form of this inspirational new facility."


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