The partnerships behind the poppies exhibition at Woodhorn Museum

Poppies_GJmr-8323Thousands of local people have now visited the Weeping Window: Poppies exhibition at Woodhorn. The exhibition was brought to the North East by Woodhorn Museum in partnership with the Community Foundation as one of its key funders.

Partners and fund-holders at the Community Foundation celebrated their success in bringing the Weeping Window: Poppies exhibition to the North East at a celebration at Woodhorn Museum. Woodhorn is the first museum to hold the exhibition as part of a nationwide tour. The event was supported by Rathbone Investment Management.

 Adam Lopardo, Director of Partnerships at the Community Foundation said:

“The poppies exhibit at the Tower of London was a national phenomenon, and the most popular tourist attraction of 2014 in the UK. Therefore, we knew the importance of bringing this to the North East and we’re delighted that the Community Foundation has helped make this happen.

“When Keith first told me about this opportunity, he was worried that in order to secure it he would need funding fast and asked for our help in suggesting potential supporters. As a hub for philanthropy in the North East, we were able to go one step further and talk to our fundholders and partners directly to secure funding in a week ensuring the Poppies could come to the North East. This is a brilliant example of Community Foundation partnerships in action and we’re delighted to celebrate our part in bringing such an iconic display to our region.”

Woodhorn Museum announced last week that visitors in September 2015 were up 1,340% than in the previous year, and Keith Merrin, Director of Woodhorn explained how the exhibition had not only been successful in attracting the general public, but had also engaged local schools and care homes for older people.

“The reason we wanted to bring the poppies installation to Woodhorn was because we believed the people of the North East might not have had the chance to see the work at the Tower of London and would respond to its very direct placing within an iconic North East context.

“It is great to see that we were right and people have come out in their thousands to see it and really loved the way that we have presented it tumbling from the pit wheel. We’re particularly proud of engaging members of the public from far-and-wide which has had a great impact on local tourism, but also we’re pleased with the response of local schools and care homes for older people who have particularly loved engaging with the project and our “Postcards from the Past” exhibition by local artist Theresa Easton.”

Poppies_GJmr-8281“Postcards from the Past” is an interactive exhibition which lets visitors share their thoughts about seeing Poppies: Weeping Window and make an act of remembrance through a simple art activity, using stamps to make a postcard to the past with their own message, memories or thought. The special stamps have been designed by artist Theresa Easton and inspired by content from the Northumberland Archives which are housed at Woodhorn Museum.

Funders which helped make this exhibition possible includes Arts Council England, The Heritage Lottery Fund, The Adderstone Fund at the Community Foundation, The Asian Fund at the Community Foundation, The Barbour Foundation, The Catherine Cookson Charitable Trust, The G S May Family Fund at the Community Foundation, The Hadrian Trust, The Linden Family Fund at the Community Foundation, The Lendrum Family Community First Fund at the Community Foundation, Northumbrian Water, The Ridley Family Charity, The W A Handley Charity Trust and Vital Northumberland at the Community Foundation.

James Garbutt, Investment Director at Rathbone Investment Management said:

“Rathbones is delighted to celebrate the Weeping Windows: Poppies exhibition at Woodhorn with the Community Foundation and its partners and fund-holders. We supported the evening because we recognise the importance of partnerships and relationships, and we’re pleased to celebrate the relationships which helped make this achievement possible.”

Woodhorn Museum is still looking for support in funding the exhibition, which is open every day until 1 November 2015. For more information about the Weeping Window: Poppies exhibition please visit

Posted on 14/10/2015 @ 3:50 pm
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