Clare People, Tuesday, 9th January 2007
Written by Ronan Judge
A number of high profile exhibitions helped boost visitor numbers to record levels at the Clare Museum in 2006.
The Clare Embroidery Exhibition and the Ennis Bypass exhibition were among the events that helped attract 39,500 people to the museum in 2006, making it Ireland's second most visited local authority museum. More than 1,700 schoolchildren from around Ireland also visited the museum.
Commenting on the figures, Curator John Rattigan said, “Once again, Clare Museum has proven to be one of the county's top visitor attractions. The total of 39,500 visitors means the Museum was the second highest of the twelve local authority museums in the country. We were behind Cork Public Museum, which received 55,000 visitors during 2006, and ahead of Waterford and Kerry with 27,000 and 35,000 visitors respectively.”
Mr Rattigan said that a number of factors have contributed to the high visitor numbers. “The highlights of 2006 included The Clare Embroidery Exhibition and The Ennis Bypass Exhibition, both of which helped to attract thousands of additional visitors to the Museum. The continued development of the Clare Heritage Circle, of which Clare Museum is a founding member, also contributed to the museum's growth. Meanwhile, the Museum's Outreach Project at Raheen Daycare Centre in Tuamgraney and outreach work with the Clare Adult Basic Education Service further underlined our desire to promote social inclusion as well as the heritage and history of Clare within the wider community,” he stated.
Meanwhile, Clare Museum has recently been successful in its application to become a participant in the Heritage Council's Standards and Accreditation Scheme, which will begin later this year.