Your Chesham – January update

What do you want to see in your New Museum?

Our last article in Your Chesham focussed on the history of the museum itself and touched on the new museum opening up at The Town Hall. 

Museum trustees and volunteers meet in the new exhibition space in Chesham Town Hall

 Back in November 2023 some of the trustees and volunteers met in the new exhibition space partly as a social get together to celebrate our new premises and partly to have a brainstorm on ideas of what we’d all like to see in the new space. Post it notes and felt tip pens galore!! ….. lots of memories, ideas, and thoughts were recorded. Expanding from this we’d like to know what you want to see in your museum, it is after all a town resource!

Over the next few weeks and months, we will be opening on Wednesdays and Saturdays, 10am-4pm, as well as inviting groups along to show them the collection, and get people involved with what the museum has in its possession. In these sessions we’d like to learn what you’d like to see in the museum, what elements of the towns past you want to read and learn about. You can also get in touch with us via our website and social media pages to let us know your thoughts. If you’re involved with a local group and would like to come along, please contact Emily on for more information.

Preparing the new exhibition space

Volunteers paint the new exhibition space

 After the mammoth job of painting the new space, walls and cabinets and getting some of our collection in place we were ready for our launch party held on the 19th January. It was a great success with volunteers, trustees, Friends of the museum and local dignitaries all in attendance. There was a real buzz in the air about the future of the museum and how it can expand and be a truly well supported town resource. 

Museum Chair, Peter Squire, notes:

 We are very pleased to be opening our Town Hall exhibition space which allows us to display to the public some of the many artifacts collected and donated over the years to the museum and until now stored at several different sites… we have started the massive task of displaying items, but would still be interested to hear from you about aspects of Chesham life you would like to see displayed.

Various Chesham Museum collection items inside the exhibition space

The new exhibition space will be developed with visitors and, initially, will focus on the three key themes of work, home and play.

‘Work’ will explore the history of industry in Chesham, particularly the B’s that the town is famous for – bricks, brushes, boots, beer, bears…. can you think of any more ?

‘Home’ will explore the domestic life of our town and the evolution of everyday objects that have shaped our lives.

‘Play’ will showcase items in our collection which relate to leisure time, including our notable sports clubs – Chesham 1879 tennis and squash club, Chesham United football club – beloved but lost cinemas, the wonderful toys and games produced at the local factory, and a wide range of amateur clubs and performances.

Lots of people have helped us create this new space, and our volunteer team has grown significantly over the last year; we now have 40 people helping us. We have all sorts of interesting jobs that we need help with, not least unwrapping much of the collection and checking its condition after so long in store. We are encouraging our stewards to help us with this during opening hours, so please do get in touch if you would like to join us!

Supporting Chesham Museum

The museum is completely independent and doesn’t receive any regular local or central funding. It costs over £10,000 pa to run the museum and we raise that income through a mixture of events – walks, talks, events – the support of our Friends, fundraising events, applications to grants and trusts, legacies and donations. There are many ways to support us. 

  • You can become a ‘Friend’ of the museum’
  • Play the Buckinghamshire lottery and choosing us as your charity, you could win a prize too! 
  • You can donate via our website which takes you to our page on
  • Support us by buying from our market stall or the museum shop
  • Attend one of our events, keep your eyes open for a brand new programme of events coming for 2024
  • Leave us a legacy in your will
  • Volunteer!

Visit the support us section on our website to find out more.

We’d also like to take this opportunity to introduce Rebecca, one of our fabulous new volunteers, who is kindly taking over our social media accounts. So, keep your eyes peeled on Instagram and Facebook for lots of new and exciting posts and reels about our museum events and the objects in our collection. 

Please also remember schools and any organisation can borrow one of our many object boxes, book an outreach workshop delivered by an expert, download our resources or commission a bespoke project. You’ll find all the info in our learning section.

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