The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarded South West Heritage Trust a project grant in July to engage visitors to The Museum of Somerset with the unique natural landscape of Somerset.

The grant impacted visitor’s experience of the museum through the running of family workshops; access to family trails;  a partnership exhibition with Somerset’s Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty; and the delivery of an evening talk by nature writer Stephen Moss.

Printmaker Jackie Curtis ran family art workshops, with attendees producing their own nature inspired print using water-based inks.

Cat Farnell led environmentally conscious ‘Go Green’ activity sessions. Visitors created collaged books inspired by protecting the natural world and contributed to a community artwork. All materials used during the sessions were sustainably sourced, with recycled materials used wherever possible.

Volunteers joined Stephen Moss for a guided riverside walk, which was aimed at encouraging slow looking at the natural environment. Participants were delighted when they spotted a kingfisher soon after their walk began. Stephen reflected on this excitement in his column for The Guardian, which can be found here. A series of mindful walks for the public will take place in Spring 2020.

The exhibition ‘Does Happiness Grow on Trees?’ showcased the artwork created by local people for a competition led by Somerset’s AONB. The competition asked entrants to create something in response to how being in nature makes them feel.

These activities were generously supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.