Town’s Egyptian collection on move
THE town’s fascinating Egyptian collection is being whisked off to London as part of a prestigious exhibition.
It’s the first time the artefacts, donated to the town by Marianne Brocklehurst, daughter of silk manufacturer John Brocklehurst, have been moved since they were put on display at West Park more than 150 years ago.
They are being loaned to Two Temple Place in London for three months to be part of ‘Beyond Beauty: Transforming the Body in Ancient Egypt’, which will tell the story of the pursuit of the body beautiful by the ancient Egyptians.
It will feature everything from funeral artefacts to the personal belongings that frequently accompanied people to the grave.
Sue Hughes, museum director, said: “This is a really exciting opportunity for Macclesfield Museums. Two Temple Place in London specialise in highlighting important regional collections like ours to raise their profile and gain more support for the organisations that care for them.
“We always knew our collections were special, but are thrilled this has been recognised nationally and that more people will have the opportunity to see this exhibition of Egyptian objects collected by Macclesfield’s own Victorian philanthropist and explorer Marianne Brocklehurst.”
Marrianne Brocklehurst amassed the impressive collection during her travels to Egypt and in 1854, and built a museum at West Park, funded by her brother, to house the collection for all to see.
Among the items bound for London are a Mummy Case, which once contained the remains of a 12-year-old dancing girl which Marianne and her party buried on the banks of the Nile before returning home; a selection of intimate items that people were buried with – a make-up palette, jewellery, combs, shoes; and Marianne’s diary, in which she recorded her travels and painted beautiful watercolours of things she saw along the way.
Mary Rose Gunn, chief executive of The Bulldog Trust, which organised the exhibition, said: “It is an exceptional opportunity for us to be able to champion the stunning Egyptology collections that are held in museums around the UK.
“We are also looking forward to strengthening cultural ties between Egypt and the UK.”
The exhibition will be on display from January 28 until April 24.
●» A mummy case from West Park Museum