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The National Folk Museum at Cregneash 70th Anniversary Celebrations 14 August 2008

On Sunday 24th August 2008, Manx National Heritage will host a special day of celebrations at the National Folk Museum at Cregneash, marking the 70th anniversary of the opening of Harry Kelly’s cottage and the creation of the first open-air folk museum in Britain. Harry

The now famous Manx cottage belonged to Harry Kelly, a Cregneash crofter-fisherman and fluent Manx speaker who died in April 1935. His family gave the cottage, its traditional furnishings and contents to the Manx Museum to form the nucleus of the Manx National Folk Museum and it was opened to the public in 1938.

Yvonne Cresswell, Curator for Social History for Manx National Heritage said: Harry Kelly's

“To celebrate the opening of Harry Kelly’s Cottage to the public, Manx National Heritage will host a special 70th anniversary event at the National Folk Museum, which promises to be a great day for the whole family. Both locals and visitors will be able to enjoy a variety of activities around the village including traditional cookery demonstrations in both Harry Kelly’s Cottage and the farmhouse at Church Farm. The blacksmith will be hard at work in the smithy and the joiner will be making a Manx cradle in his workshop. There will also be a variety of demonstrations of traditional Manx patchwork, needlework and spinning demonstrations by members of the Manx Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers together with demonstrations of rushwork, netmaking and buttermaking”.

There will be plenty of activities for the younger visitors (and the young at heart) to do with a series of family activities about Manx crofting life and an opportunity to learn a few basic words of Manx Gaelic. Alice

Manx National Heritage will also open its latest exhibition Home is…; an exhibition about growing up in Cregneash, Harry Kelly, his life and the founding of the National Folk Museum in 1938.

Visitors will also be able to see the entries for the Home is…display, where the public were asked to recreate their favourite or fantasy room in a shoe-box. The miniature ‘rooms’ reflect and illustrate the wide variety of living spaces that people live in or would like to live in. Rom in a Shoe Box

Yvonne Cresswell continued:

“The entire village will be a hive of activity and visitors will also have the opportunity to see harvest work in the fields around Cregneash”.

Lunches and light refreshments including homemade cakes, tea and scones will be served in the Village Tea Rooms throughout the day.

The National Folk Museum at Cregneash is situated on the A31 Howe Road leading to the Sound Road and ample free parking is available for the day. Visitors are asked to utilise the event car park which will be signposted on the day.

The event will take place at the National Folk Museum at Cregneash on Sunday 24th August 2008 between 10am and 5pm, all are welcome to attend and normal admission charges will apply.

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