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Award Winning Volunteers

December 15th 2015

People who volunteer in museums across the North East have been recognised for their contributions at an awards ceremony at Newcastle’s Discovery Museum.

Those receiving accolades included Jack Walton who volunteers at Discovery Museum and was the winner in the Outstanding Contribution from a Young Volunteer under 25 category.

Other winners on the day included the team of volunteer guides at Newcastle’s Victoria Tunnel; volunteer Aaron Moody from Seven Stories in Newcastle; Rosemary Zakrzewski who volunteers at the Museum of Archaeology, Durham; and Robin Gibson, Railway Operations and Engineering Manager at Stephenson Railway Museum who was nominated for his work in supporting the team of volunteers at the museum.

The awards were presented by Councillor Ged Bell, Chair of the Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums Joint Committee. He said:

“The contribution that volunteers of all ages make to the running of museums in the North East is incredibly valuable. Much of the work we do would not be possible without their dedication and enthusiasm.”

Volunteers and staff in museums across the North East nominated their peers who they felt deserved recognition either for their volunteering or for their work in supporting volunteers in museums.

volunteer_awards_2015This year’s ceremony included a special award category recognising volunteers’ contributions to World War I programmes in museums, which was won by volunteers at Woodhorn Museum who worked on the Weeping Window Poppies exhibition.

Keith Merrin, Director of Woodhorn, said:

“47 fabulous volunteers were involved with various aspects of the Weeping Window Poppies exhibition, from helping with the preparations for the installation and providing help and guidance to would-be family researchers, to dedicatedly stewarding the sculpture and assisting visitors.

“They have been an incredible team, and an invaluable part of the success and smooth running of the event, contributing hugely to the visitor experience by providing knowledge, information, practical help and support, and a listening ear. This team has had an undeniably positive impact on the cultural organisation at Woodhorn, and the award is a fine tribute to their amazing contribution.”

Councillor Val Tyler, Cabinet member for Arts, Leisure and Culture at Northumberland County Council, said:

“It has been a fantastic award-winning week for Woodhorn and the council is very proud to have been part of the partnership that brought the Weeping Window sculpture to Northumberland. I was also part of the team that volunteered at the poppies exhibition so I’m doubly delighted at the success. It has been an incredibly popular and poignant exhibition with residents and visitors all flocking to see it."

The North East Museum Volunteer Awards is managed by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums.