Preston’s Harris Museum and Art Gallery has won a national award for one of its collections.
The landmark venue’s Money Matters project to better catalogue, display and interpret the 12,500 coins in its collection has scooped the Collections Trust Award.
The Money Matters project transformed the way that the Harris uses its 12,500 item collection which includes Roman and British coin hoards, individual coins from around the world, medals, tokens and paper money.
Highlights include the mysterious Rossall Hoard of Roman coins and items from the Cuerdale Hoard – the largest hoard of Viking silver ever found outside of Russia.
Coun Veronica Afrin, executive member for leisure and culture at Preston Council said: “We are delighted that the hard work of Harris staff to develop and deliver this innovative project has been recognised with the national Collections Trust Award. Money Matters has successfully challenged the idea that coins are ‘small and boring’ with a range of fascinating displays and well-attended events for adults and children, focusing on highlights of the collection such as Viking silver from the remarkable Cuerdale Hoard, mysterious Roman hoards and even money from the 1920s Weimar Republic in Germany. Staff have been able to offer volunteering opportunities to university students in archaeology, creative writing and photography.”
Head of arts and heritage at Preston Council, Alex Walker, said: “Thanks to funding from the Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund and the Friends of the Harris and the hard work of our staff, the project is on track to achieve its aims of improving the storage and condition of the coins, helping Harris staff better understand and display the collection, enabling young people to learn from the coin collection and supporting fellow museums.”