The Red House, Aldeburgh, the home of the British composer and Suffolk hero Benjamin Britten has been recognised for its family offering and has been shortlisted, alongside 10 other museums nationwide, for the Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum Award.
For the last two years the Britten-Pears Foundation has worked hard in broadening its audience base and making The Red House an important part of the community. Along the Suffolk Coast, rural isolation, poor public transport links and economic hardship create significant barriers to accessing cultural activities and we are taking an active role in developing opportunities and engagement with young people.
The Red House believes that it is never too early to learn about music and history and now offer a variety of free activities such as Mini Music Makers sessions for 0-5-year-olds, family trails and activities during the school holidays, resources and exciting events to help families explore the beautiful site and exhibitions together.
Sarah Bardwell, CEO of the Britten-Pears Foundation which manages the site said: Britten encouraged children to make and enjoy music. At his home at The Red House in Aldeburgh we strive to continue that tradition through encouraging discoveries in all corners of his home and gardens. With less time available in the school curriculum for music and creative activity the Red House is delighted to provide musical sustenance and understanding with a variety of activities for young people, families and school groups.
Emmajane Avery, Chair of Kids in Museums said: We were really impressed with the high quality of this year’s nominations for the Family Friendly Museum Award and the brilliant family-friendly work that is going on in museums all over the country. It’s fantastic that so many museums are using our Manifesto to shape their work with families, children and young people and listening and responding to their feedback. The Red House has done a brilliant job in engaging families with classical music in their museum through hands-on activities such as Mini Music Makers sessions. They have worked hard to overcome barriers to families visiting, reaching out into their local community and taking practical steps such as providing a shuttle bus to the museum.
The shortlisted museums are: The Erewash Museum, Derbyshire Leeds City Museum, West Yorkshire Museum of the Order of St John, London National Maritime Museum, London Perth Museum and Art Gallery, Perth and Kinross The Postal Museum, London The Red House, Suffolk Torquay Museum, Devon The Whitworth, Greater Manchester Wrexham County Borough Museum, Wrexham Yr Ysgwrn, Gwynedd
The winner will be announced in London on Monday 1 October 2018.