Museum Snapshots

Armstrong’s Household and Farming Museum

Armstrong’s Household and Farming Museum near Alnwick, Northumberland, was set up in the 1980s by Sylvia Armstrong. She began collecting when she realised that many people threw away things they no longer wanted, and the history of her area would be lost as a result.

The museum includes a traditional farmhouse kitchen with a black range, kitchen equipment and food packets. A stable contains areas on dairy, old hand tools and memories of the Second World War. An archive of farm literature includes catalogues, farm account books, and particulars of land and farm sales. Shoes, clothing, and jewellery are also part of the collection.

Sylvia was awarded an MBE in 1999 for her services to the museum. The Armstrongs also donate much of the museum’s proceeds to charity, and have raised thousands of pounds over the years.

Sylvia Armstrong in her museum
Sylvia Armstrong, 2014.

Images via The Journal.

Museum Snapshots

Adamston Agricultural Museum


The Adamston Agricultural Museum was opened in 1972 by Hew McCall-Smith. His collection comprised more than 500 items related to farming and domestic life in the North East of Scotland. This included ploughs, horse harness, and dairy equipment. McCall-Smith also organised events, including exhibits of threshing, ploughing, and cheese-making.

The museum remained open until the early 1980s, when the collection was purchased by Moray District Council and incorporated into Aden, the North East of Scotland Agricultural Centre (now known as the Aberdeenshire Farming Museum).

More information about these museums can be found in An Introduction to Scottish Ethnology by Alexander Fenton.

Image via Deeside Books.