Radstock Museum is delighted to have a series of experts join us to share their interests on Saturdays throughout July & August.

The programme will run from 2-4pm on Saturdays, for all visitors to chat to, see demonstrations and experiment.

July 6th: PRINTING with Peter Leach: 2.0 until 4.0pm

(Image: Typesetting – Wikipedia)

Publisher, printer and lover of books, Peter has professional experience of both modern and traditional printing methods.

In the Museum’s print workshop, under Peter’s expert guidance, you will be inspired to produce your own printed cards. The Albion printing press, trays of type and wood cuts will be on display.

Come and get hands on experience with one of our recently restored Adana presses.

July 13th: FROM FLEECE TO FINISH with Pam Mitchell: 2.0 until 4.0pm  

During the Artisan Afternoon at Radstock Museum, Pam hopes to be able to show visitors a wide range of fleece samples and their colours, together with the actual process of preparing raw fleece for spinning on a spinning wheel, and the finished product.  There will also be an opportunity for some visitors to try their hand at spinning.

July 20th: ROYAL MAIL GUARDS with Martin Horler: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

The age of the Royal Mail Coaches transformed communications in its day; turnpikes, coaching inns and all manner of travellers criss-crossed the country.  Martin will be a living, breathing Royal Mail Guard, on hand to tell you about the demanding role of the guard, the journeys and routines. Listen out for the guard’s horn warning gatekeepers of an approaching mail coach: to not have the gates open in time could mean a stiff fine!!

July 20th: LEATHERWORKING with Christina Charles-Bayliss: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

HIRSCH AND KIRSCH was founded by Christina Charles in 2017. She makes contemporary leather lifestyle products and accessories using Italian vegetable tanned leather and British hardware. Each piece is handmade to order from her studio in Welton, Somerset.  The label grew out of a love and fascination with vegetable tanned leather and its versatility of use, in both historic and contemporary contexts. Christina endeavors to unite British craftsmanship and contemporary design by using beautiful materials, traditional techniques and directional surface pattern concepts through a ‘Modern Craft’ aesthetic. 

Her minimalist and almost architectural approach celebrates leather as a material by treating it as a canvas for manipulation and ultimately creating useful vessels that will only get better with age. Having studied Fashion at the Winchester School of Art, Christina has worked for nearly 20 years as a designer and product developer for the Fashion and Accessories industry, specializing in leather.

HIRSCH AND KIRSCH leather products

July 27th: RESEARCHING FAMILY HISTORY with Simon Carter: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

Simon Carter is Radstock Museum’s resident Documentations team leader. He has a wealth of knowledge & experience regarding records and archives of the past.  He is also the author of ‘A Rough Guide to Family History’, which offers user-friendly advice for exploring your family tree and helps you through some common difficulties.  He will look forward to helping you navigate your way through genealogy.

August 10th:  TOOLS & TRADES HISTORY SOCIETY with Nick White: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

Image: An example of a tool ‘Wotsit! (Taths)

Most of us have a few tools about the house for odd jobs and D.I.Y.  Some of these may have been handed down from a grandfather or even a great grandfather, who might have been a wheelwright or saddler, a farrier or shoemaker.  You may wonder what some of these old tools are, or how they were used.  Why not bring one or two along and see if we can identify them and tell you about them.  About how old they are, what trade they belonged to and how they were used. There will also be a ‘Wotsit’ quiz of weird and mundane examples for you to guess their purpose.


August 10th: TWINE, ROPE & SAIL MAKING with Ross Aitken: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

Ross works at Dawe’s Twineworks in East Coker which is a real working Victorian factory – the last surviving rural twineworks which still has its original machinery. Ross can share stories and knowledge with our visitors about the curious but absolutely vital manufacture that was used so widely during the Industrial Revolution.


AUGUST 24th: THE MILESTONE SOCIETY with Janet Dowding & Richard Raynsford: 2.0 until 4.0pm.

Unlike listed buildings, milestones are usually too small to have their own ‘Friends’. Since 2001, the Milestone Society’s volunteers have been collating information on milestones and learning the most appropriate ways of caring for these quirky lumps of rock and rusting metal sitting quietly by the wayside. Way markers are fast disappearing; around 9000 are thought to survive in the UK. Most were removed or defaced in World War II to baffle potential German invaders and not all were replaced afterwards. Many have been demolished as roads have been widened, or have been victims of collision damage, or have been smashed by hedge-cutters or flails. Janet & Richard will showcase the work of the Milestone Society in preserving these transport treasures.