Author Topic: Further to the Broadfield House closure, debate: The British Glass Foundation  (Read 2238 times)

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Offline sph@ngw

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I hope I am not repeating news already posted, I did a search and did not find anything.

Fearing that since the elections in Dudley, the Council is determined to close Broadfield House eventually, ( and may I add I and my family are friends and support BHGM fully!), a group of glass "enthousiasts, collectors, dealers, auction experts, Museum curators, manufacturers, associations, etc," about twelve of us are looking at another scenario!

Could the threatened closure be the opportunity to create a West Midlands Glass Museum of World class status, similar to Corning Glass Museum in New York State?

With this in mind, we have formed a steering group to investigate the possibility of working with DMBC
to look at a redundant glass factory site to create a new vision.
A centre for education and learning not only about glass design and history, but how important glass is to us all! To use the most energy efficient glass in is construction, show how glass leads in so many fields, fibre optics, solar panels, wind farms (the blades are glass coated!), how easy it is to recycle, and how lightweight and energy saving are modern glass bottles.
All thsi with a magnificent area to display the Broadfield House Collection, its archives, and to tell the story of 400 years ( 1612 to 2012) since the Lorrainer Paul Tysak, built the first glass furnace in Kingswinford.
With ample parking, and alongside craft studios, rented out at advantageous rates to glass artists, engravers,  cutters.designers, scientific glass makers, with a shop to sell their products, a little like "The World of Glass" in St Helens which tells the history of the town as well as the glass factory and of glass itself, but more up to date, hands on and school children friendly!

It wil not be cheap to set up, but if Staffordshire can raise £3m in fourteen weeks for a museum to house a hoard of coins worth about £50k, why can't we raise a similar sum to give teh West Midlands the best damn glass experience hither to?

The mistakes of the Tational Glass centre in Sunderland will be learnt, the appeal of "Glass Valley" near Dieppe used, and a threatened heritage, may make young people in teh Stiourbridge area, proud of their history, heritage and want to getinvolved!
If the Friends oF Broadfield House say we are threatening them , they are wrong. they are friends of a Museum, a glass collection not a building!
Wonderfully elegant, it had no real connection with glass making and is not ideal for display, Conference and glass making!
We want to put Dudley on the map as The British Centre of fine quality glass making since 1612 again!
Already we have promises of donations totalling around £20,000 just to kick start the process.
We hope to be in walking distance of the Red House Cone ( a few bricks dropped down from it recentlyincreasing teh fact that it needs urget structural repair!).

If you go on to the Friends website  http://www.friendsofbroadfieldhouse.co.uk/you will see who we are and that we will soon have a Mission Statement, and hopefully backing of all if not most of th British Glass Industry behind our new proposal and venture.
Ambitious, certainly !

Visionary, we hope so!

 Needed desperately we believe, as a solution to possibly the Broadfield House Collection breaking up completely, as did The Thomas Webb  Collection, and The Royal Brierley Collection!
Where will the funding come from? Appeals for EU funds, UK Heritage Lottery ( after the Olympics!), various private and public charities, and we will need some DMBC funding for the staffing costs. Several bodies have shone interest at thsi early stage including Birmingham Museum!

Please support this new initiative, as members of the biggest internet glass group, and tell us what else you would like to see in it!

Stephen Pollock-Hill
President of British Glass 2010.
Acting Vice Presidentof the British Glass Foundation ( in formation!).











Offline neilh

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Link is slightly wonky
http://www.friendsofbroadfieldhouse.co.uk/

I visited Broadfield House as a day trip from my home in Manchester. 8 trains and 2 buses - a public transport marathon! If you are hoping to get a new museum off the ground, please place it a little better for those of us without a car!


Offline sph@ngw

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May I withdraw my remark in my earlier post concerning The Friends of Broadfield House about the BGF "threatening them".
This was the wrong choice of word as we are two groups of people with the same aim principallly, that of saving the glass collection, and many of us belong and support both!

We  feel that a body of glass experts and enthousiasts needs to work with Dudley Council to solve the
problem of the future of Broadfield House. It has served the area splendidly for over ten years,
but with a collection of around 20,000 pieces and archives at Himley Hall, it is time for a rethink!
With most of the Crystal companies closed in the Stourbridge area, there is a danger, the heritage and tradition will be forgotten, and the proud boast "Crystal Quarter" will ring false.

We want to raise funds for a new major local attraction, designed for purpose, of national and international importance to markl 1612-2012, 400 years of glass making around Dudley!

sph@ngw
PS and also correct Thnational as "The National!"


Offline Frank

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I applaud this initiative!
Frank A.
Please help preserve glass web-sites for posterity by donating to The Glass Study Association a non-profit organisation.
Scotland's Glass - Ysart Glass
Glass Zoo - Glass Study.COM
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Offline Janet H

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Hi David,

Stephen Pollock-Hill and many others including myself and many glass organisations, are currently setting up a charity called the British Glass Foundation. We aim to secure the future of the collections currently held at Broadfield House Glass Museum, work with the local authority and raise money. We will be inviting members to join us and hope to launch in November. Please feel free to read our mission statement on http://www.britishglassfoundation.org.uk/ (Mod: link corrected)

Jan Hendry


Offline David W

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Hi Janet,
I did know that. I was one of the few at the inaugural discussion meeting of the BGF prior to the the London Glass Circle meeting last December.
I think I pointed out that their Borough Council claims that they have the largest number of rate payers in the country. So if they were really serious a one -off contribution from each equivalent to a couple of burgers would go some way to solving the financial problem.
David Watts


Offline langhaugh

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What a wonderful idea! Last year I visited Broadfield House and the Tacoma Museum of Glass within a few months of each other. I was struck by the difference in vision. The Tacoma Museum of Glass seemed to be thriving on many levels. It has also been the catalyst that revitalized a rundown city centre that was built on an industry that has almost disappeared, logging. In other words, its connection to glass stems from the beginning of the studio glass movement, unlike Stourbridge with its hundreds of years of history. I haven't visited Corning yet, but if Broadfield can become something like Tacoma, then that would a great step forward for glass lovers. I'll include the url in case anyone is interested in taking a look at what Tacoma offers. http://www.museumofglass.org/

David (completely insignificant and unimportant, but still has opinions)
My glass collection is at https://picasaweb.google.com/lasilove


Offline Frank

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And as a knock-on of the Tacoma museum, we also have the Glass Hotel or more properly the Murano Hotel in Tacoma http://www.hotelmuranotacoma.com/ - so even private enterprise can exploit a glass museum and in turn become a tourist attraction in itself.

Imagination is all it takes, talk of a troubled economy is clearly not imagination at work. Send a few Dudley councillors on a free trip to Tacoma and you might see a different attitude.

Corning may seem in a different class but in terms of 'Collections' Broadfield is in the same class.
Frank A.
Please help preserve glass web-sites for posterity by donating to The Glass Study Association a non-profit organisation.
Scotland's Glass - Ysart Glass
Glass Zoo - Glass Study.COM
Commercial Czech


 

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