Home Places to visit Half-term at Beamish Museum

Half-term at Beamish Museum

Try sketching this half-term. Picture; Beamish Museum
Try sketching this half-term. Picture; Beamish Museum

Norman Cornish and the creative arts, February 16-24

Get creative at Beamish, The Living Museum of the North this February half-term and be inspired by North East artist Norman Cornish.

Visitors can take part in the Norman Cornish and the Creative Arts event, where they can follow his approach of “painting the world you know”.

Discover how people in the 1820s, 1900s, 1940s and 1950s created art inspired by life around them, from mining and folk art to fairground paintings.

The event coincides with the centenary year of Norman’s birth and Beamish will soon be starting work on a house based on his former home in Spennymoor, County Durham.

Sketches on show

During half-term, sketches by Norman, from Beamish’s collection, will be displayed at the museum alongside images of some of his work, on loan from the Cornish family.

People will be able to add their own face to a mural in The Pit Village chapel, inspired by the mural Norman created at St Andrew’s Church Hall in Spennymoor and commissioned by Durham County Council in 1962 to commemorate the opening of the new County Hall in 1963.

Visitors will be able to get involved in artistic activities around the museum – see examples of boodyware folk art and create their own version, try sketching and printing, and have a go at “Make Do and Mend”, quilling (a paper craft), proggy mat making, embroidery and more.

They can also take part in a fairground art project at Beamish’s own fairground.

Create your own artwork

Younger visitors can pick up their own Beamish sketchbook to create artwork as they explore the open air museum.

Folk art, paintings and other artistic items from Beamish’s collection will be on display, and artwork produced by schools and community groups will be on show.

John Cornish, Norman’s son, said: “As a family, we are delighted that my father’s legacy is being recognised with such an exciting week at Beamish.

“We hope the event will encourage a new generation of artists and show them how to seek inspiration from their local surroundings.”

Learn local crafts this half-term. Picture; Beamish Museum
Learn local crafts this half-term. Picture; Beamish Museum

‘Get inspired by Norman’

Siân Fox, Beamish’s community events officer, said: “We’re inviting everyone to get creative and be inspired by Norman Cornish to make their own art reflecting the world around them.“

The Norman Cornish and the Creative Arts half-term event is included in admission to Beamish and is free for Unlimited Pass holders and Friends of Beamish members.

February is also the last chance to take a spin on Beamish’s real ice rink this winter, open daily from February 16-24 (small extra charge applies).

Beamish Museum is open daily from 10am to 4pm, with last admission 3pm (closed February 15), visit www.beamish.org.uk.

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Mandy Watson is a freelance journalist and an incurable plantaholic. MandyCanUDigIt grew from the tiny seed of a Twitter account into the rainforest of information you see before you. Gardening columnist for the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail and editor of the Teesdale Mercury Magazine. Attracted by anything rebellious, exotic and nerdy, even after all these years. Passionate about northern England and gardens everywhere. Falls over a lot.

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