On Saturday 17th April, from 11am – 4pm there will be a chance to discover how Victorian Bedfordian’s would have lived and worked. Earning a Crust: A Victorian Working Day is a free family day at Bedford Museum.
Come along to have a go at lace-making, rag-rug making and basket weaving. Martin Hazell (pictured) will be showing you how he makes traditional baskets from local Willow and Hazel collected at his smallholding in Gravenhurst.
There will be lots of other activities to try. How about writing with quill pen and ink? Or learning how Victorians washed clothes without electricity or washing machines? There will also be folk music provided by Graeme Meek who sings traditional songs inspired by Bedfordshire life.
The family day is part of ‘Clocking-in: an exhibition of the working day’ at Bedford Gallery. The exhibition is a chance to see the place you live, as you’ve never seen it before. It charts the history of Bedfordshire’s industries and how these industries have changed the lives of Bedfordshire’s residents. The exhibition includes amazing insights into our working day, highlighting what has remained the same but also, how our lives have changed.
‘There were still people in Bedford who believed in what they called gold water, which was the water they washed the gold in, having medicinal properties when they drank it or rubbed it in. His job was to go and retrieve the water that they had washed the gold objects in and hand it out gratuitously to the people of Bedford.’
Richard Stoodley (speaking about his father working at John Bull & Co from 1920 to 1970)