His­tor­i­cal as­so­ci­a­tions should col­lab­o­rate

Campbeltown Courier - - LETTERS -

Sir,

Your re­cent sup­port­ive edi­to­rial on the work of the Heritage Cen­tre is greatly ap­pre­ci­ated by our en­tirely vol­un­tary staff and trustees.

The cen­tre is be­com­ing a very pop­u­lar place for vis­i­tors who are im­pressed, as you in­di­cate, with the range of ex­hibits of Kin­tyre So­cial His­tory, and the friendly wel­come they re­ceive.

The cen­tre is in the process of ob­tain­ing of­fi­cial recog­ni­tion from Mu­se­ums and Gal­leries of Scot­land as a des­ig­nated mu­seum, which will greatly ex­pand its ca­pa­bil­ity both in terms of its dis­plays and also its abil­ity to raise fund­ing from gov­ern­ment and other sources.

This will recog­nise not only the cen­tre’s role as the so­cial his­tory cen­tre for South Kin­tyre but also, among other things, as home of the na­tional col­lec­tion re­lat­ing to the work of the naval res­cue tug­boats in the Sec­ond World War.

This col­lec­tion of let­ters, mod­els, pho­to­graphs, ships’ en­signs and other as­pects of the work of the res­cue tug­boats, for which Camp­bel­town was one of the main bases, was do­nated by the Res­cue Tug­boats As­so­ci­a­tion, with which the cen­tre has had a long and valu­able re­la­tion­ship.

Part of this col­lec­tion forms a per­ma­nent ex­hibit in the cen­tre, the re­main­der is avail­able for ac­cess by schol­ars in­ter­ested in the sub­ject about which we get reg­u­lar en­quiries.

We were some­what sur­prised, there­fore, to read that Camp­bel­town Mu­seum had ac­cepted a model of the Bustler, one of the tugs mainly as­so­ci­ated with Camp­bel­town, for its col­lec­tion, since du­pli­ca­tion is some­thing none of us can af­ford in these very straight­ened times. Ob­vi­ously our two or­gan­i­sa­tions do not com­mu­ni­cate as well as we should.

It is clear, as your edi­to­rial in­di­cates, that in the fu­ture, fund­ing will be very dif­fi­cult for all mu­se­ums. Camp­bel­town is for­tu­nate at present with its his­tor­i­cal/cul­tural re­sources which in­clude the An­ti­quar­ian So­ci­ety with its out­stand­ing jour­nal, the li­brary with its very help­ful staff as well as the mu­seum with its salaried cu­ra­tor and of course, the Heritage Cen­tre.

It is to be hoped that the changes be­ing forced upon us all by the cur­rent fi­nan­cial pres­sure will in­duce the greater col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween all of these bod­ies which you rec­om­mend.

Pro­fes­sor Ron­ald J Roberts FRSE Trus­tee, Camp­bel­town Heritage Cen­tre.

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