Explore the fascinating world of the Victorian judges at this award-winning historic house.

Very pleased with our new award

Sandford Award

Newsflash!  We've just heard that gaby and Dave, the Curator and Museum Assistant, are off to the Houses of Parliament to get the award in February.  Thanks to all the schools and other educational groups who support us in our work.  December 2010

The Judge's Lodging has just been awarded the prestigious Sandford Award for Heritage Education.  This is the second time the museum has been given this award, which recognises the achievements of historic sites who meet the tough criteria laid out by the Heritage Education Trust.  This is a non-competitive award, where heritage properties from around the UK are nominated or invited to apply and be assessed by a panel of independent judges.

The current panel of Judges is drawn from professional educationalists including OFSTED Inspectors, former head teachers, education consultants and heritage property based education officers.

Awards are presented to the winners at a National Presentation Ceremony held at one of the winning properties later in the year. It's a major event in the Heritage Education calendar.  In 2005, when The Judge's Lodging first won this award, the then UK Minister for Culture, David Lammy, presented curator Gaby Rivers with the award certificate at a ceremony at Big Pit National Coal Museum. Staff are now excitedly waiting to discover where they will go to receive this award (and who from!). 

Gaby is delighted by the news and says it could not have been possible without the incredible dedication of her staff, who work so hard to ensure that every school group has a wonderful day at the museum.

The detailed report, written by the award judges, finishes with this citation:

'It is a refreshing change to visit a historic property and to be told that you are able to handle any of the Victorian artefacts on display and that there are no barriers.  Of all the senses touch is perhaps the most revealing and available to all. To hold and feel demonstrates the weight, texture, the materials from which an object was made and its structure. For children and teachers visiting 'The Judge's Lodging' there is no stress, no evidence of intimidation, each pupil is encouraged and thus allowed to learn at their own level.' 

You can find more information on the Sandford Award here


July 2010




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Strange But True

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    The Victorian actress Sarah Bernhardt used to sleep in a coffin because she said it helped her to understand the tragic roles she had to play.


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