A soggy Sunday saved! - Pitstone Green Museum

Sunday, 10 August 2014

So ex-hurricane Bertha put a dampener on our plans to go to London today. Little Miss A has never been so didn't want her first visit to be spent stuck in the pushchair behind the raincover!

By lunchtime, we decided we really wanted to get out of the house - despite the weather. Little Miss A kept dropping the biggest hints that she wanted to go out by pointing out the window at regular intervals. So we needed to come up with a Plan B.

A quick trawl of a few local websites and twitter feeds, I came across the Pitstone Green Museum. At first glance, I definitely thought it would be too old for Little Miss A. However, the positives were:
1) It's only half an hour away from Aylesbury
2) It looked like there was lots undercover so we would be out of the rain
3) They serve refreshments so if nothing else we could shelter there with a cup of tea

So off we went with our wet weather gear and we're so glad we did! A great little find!

The term 'Museum' makes you think that it's going to be one building with a load of exhibits in glass cases, but it's so much more than that.

The museum has numerous exhibits relating to farming, country life and trades local to the area. There are lots of different buildings that contain the displays and you can wander around them at your own pace. In some of the rooms there are volunteers who will do demonstrations so we stopped in the model railway room for a while and the print room.

There's a vast array of rural life artefacts along with farming machinery. There's also a room containing a collection of vintage wireless sets and photographic items. It really is amazing how far technology has come! Quite a surprise was coming across an accurate replica of the front section of a Lancaster Bomber which you can actually go inside. There's also a big Crossley Gas Engine and a huge Rack Saw. Unfortunately, they didn't have the engine running today as it takes 4 people to get it going, but we did see the Saw in action.

When we arrived, a troop of Morris Dancers had just started. They were in the barn so we could watch in the dry. At first Little Miss A wasn't too sure as they had their faces painted and made lots of noise with their wooden sticks and whoops! She sat very still, mesmerised by them but when they gave out percussion instruments (tambourines, maracas etc.) she was soon joining in.

This was Little Miss A dancing away at the second Morris Dancing session!

As if that wasn't enough, there were a few craft stalls and local craft demonstrations such as basket weaving and lace-making. They also do tractor rides but due to the weather, these were not running today. Next time!

The museum is run by volunteers and we were amazed by the quantity of exhibits. The volunteers were really friendly and passionate about the Museum.

We easily filled a good few hours and will definitely visit again. There was enough to keep Little Miss A entertained even though she's so young. It's a great option for a rainy day as so much of it is undercover.

It costs £6 per adult and £2 per child. Little Miss A was free. For Sundays in 2014, one child is free with each paying adult.

The Pitstone Green Museum is only open on selected dates throughout the summer. The next date is the August Bank Holiday Monday (25th August). So pick a date and put it in your diary, it's well worth a visit!

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