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Aspire Traineeship: An introduction

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Hello! My name is Nicola Trowell and since the middle of July I have been working as the Salisbury Museum’s Aspire Trainee. My role, which continues until early 2017, is to aid in the planning of the Museum’s upcoming Constable in Context exhibition, running from 17 September 2016- 25 March 2017.

The exhibition is part of the Aspire programme, in which we are partners along with four other national and regional museums. The Aspire partnership was part of the 2013 acquisition of John Constable’s Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows 1831 through the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Art Fund (with a contribution from the Wolfson Foundation), The Manton Foundation and Tate Members. Since 2013, the programme has enabled audiences of all ages to enjoy and learn more about the work of John Constable by touring Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows 1831 across the UK. Each museum partner will display the work in the context of their collection, accompanied by a programme of activities.

I have been working closely with our Exhibitions, Learning and Marketing officers on different aspects of the exhibition. My work so far has been largely focused on researching and finalising the content for the exhibition with Joyce (our Exhibitions Officer), alongside gaining an understanding of the various tasks within my role. Although I have been part of the Salisbury Museum’s reception team for the past year, I have had little experience in the actual planning of an exhibition. Therefore this past month has been given me such a great insight into the process and hard work that goes into planning a temporary exhibition.

Having had an interest in museums and how they function from a young age, my passion for exhibitions really took off while I was studying BA Archaeology at the University of Southampton. It was here that, after undertaking an introductory module on museums, I decided my career goal was to develop exhibitions which will encourage audiences to become more involved in heritage and culture.

So far, I have thoroughly enjoyed my traineeship and I have already gained hugely beneficial experience that will undoubtedly aid me in my career aspirations. I am now turning my attention more greatly to developing learning resources for the exhibition, something I am particularly looking forward to!

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