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Abingdon Museum Blog

Fossil Hunting

The current exhibition at Abingdon Museum “Sea Dragons and Giant Monsters” has been greatly enhanced by specimens lent to us by Dr James Etienne from his private collection. While installing the exhibition, we talked about collecting fossils, how he found some of the most impressive items in his collection and how he is looking for…

Swans in Abingdon

Today (Friday 22nd July) is the last day of this year’s swan upping, due to finish at Abingdon Bridge at 5 in the afternoon. Perhaps you have seen the signs, and perhaps you have seen it before and know all about it. You might also have heard that all swans in this country belong to…

On the Throwing of Buns

Did you go to the Platinum Jubilee Bun Throwing? I recently mentioned the throwing of buns to some friends, and they were amused, puzzled and intrigued. Throwing actual buns? From the roof? Where did that strange idea come from? In this blogpost I will try to illuminate the origins of the Bun Throwing in Abingdon,…

Celebrating the Queen

The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is in full swing by now. As I write this, flags have gone up on the lampposts here in Abingdon, souvenir mugs are on sale, and even the postbox in the Market Place is adorned with a crown. We are looking forward to the Jubilee Bun Throwing in June. So perhaps…

Platteln for the Queen

As we all know, the Queen has two birthdays. One is the 21st April (today!), the day on which she was actually born. Happy birthday, Your Majesty! The other is not a fixed date, but usually the second Saturday in June, the day on which the official celebrations take place. In June 2006 Abingdon celebrated…

Abingdon’s Queen Victoria

This article attempts to describe the gift of the Queen Victoria statue to Abingdon and some of the many events to which it has been witness. Could she speak, she would have many a tale to relate about her time here from 1887. Before Queen Victoria, there was an obelisk on the Market Place, with…

Extreme Weather in Abingdon: Rain and Flood

People have lived in Abingdon and in settlements in the same spot before the town existed for millennia. One of the reasons why they chose that spot for living is the location by the river. A river is a handy source of water, and it can be a natural barrier but also a vital transport…

Grinling Gibbons on the move

If you have visited Abingdon Museum, you will have seen the mirror with the large ornately carved frame hanging on the wall in the Sessions Gallery. However, if you have visited very recently, you will not have seen the mirror. That is because it has temporarily travelled elsewhere. The frame is one of Abingdon Museum’s…

Nelson, HMS Victory and Abingdon Museum

One of the real curiosities in the museum collection is a small piece of wood, not shaped into anything in particular, just an irregular block. The significance lies in where the wood has come from: it is from the Victory, the famous ship which is now a major tourist attraction in Portsmouth. There is no…

Abingdon Fair Past and Present

After we missed out on it last year, we could enjoy the fair again this year, filling the Market Place and stretching all the way down Ock Street. Today the Runaway Fair is on, and this gives us the opportunity to look back on the fair(s) of Abingdon in history. One of our team members…

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