From Skate Park to Haunted House: What do Newtongrange Primary want?

To kick off our programme of community consultation I was lucky enough to be joined by four classes from Newtongrange Primary School. The pupils’ enthusiasm, imagination and sense of fun was just what we needed to start thinking big and coming up with some amazing ideas for the future of the Boiler House. We really want people to think outside the box and this was certainly the case during our three school workshops.

When we first started thinking about this project and how to find out people’s thoughts and ideas about National Mining Museum Scotland, working with the local primary school was top of my list. We have had fantastic experiences working with Newtongrange Primary in the past through our programme of Takeover Days (http://www.museumsgalleriesscotland.org.uk/about-us/news/news-article/556/kids-take-over-scotlands-museum-today) and so I was very excited to hear they were willing to come along and take part in our workshops.

On the day, each class set off to explore Lady Victoria Colliery with one of our ex-miner guides. Equipped with clipboards, paper and pencils they were encouraged to draw pictures of things they found interesting and to look at shapes and colours that may help inspire their own designs later. It was a fantastic opportunity for me to see the colliery through a kid’s eyes and the artwork was brilliant!

After a quick snack, it was all about generating ideas and everyone got involved, sharing their thoughts and even cheering their favourite designs! We’ve learned a lot about what young people think of the museum and are already making changes. As for the Boiler House, the artwork shows it could be anything and we love the sky’s the limit, imaginative responses!
We now have lots of designs for gaming rooms, skate parks, dance studios, haunted houses, theme parks, ice cream parlours (definitely one of my favourites), pit pony stables and much, much more. Here are just a few examples of the wonderful artwork produced:

A skate park

A skate park

Ice cream, dodgeball and a mine card ride

Ice cream, dodgeball and a mine cart ride

Ponies and a very exciting looking ride and skate park!

Ponies and a very exciting looking ride and skate park!













A colliery inspired ice cream parlour

A colliery inspired ice cream parlour

The range of ideas and the artwork itself are fantastic and we will have examples on display throughout our community consultations events in the NMMS Power House. Make sure you come along to see them and also to have a chance to have your say! The events will be held on:

Thursday 23 July, 1pm
Friday 14 August, 10am
Saturday 3 October, 1pm

I can’t wait to start the rest of the consultation and hear some more imaginative ideas…

Hopefully see you on the 23rd!

Lynsey (Assistant Curator)

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