Seen and Definitely Heard at Clare Museum

The Clare Champion, Friday, September 23, 2011

A New temporary exhibition on childhood in Ireland called Seen But Not Heard, featuring toys and other artefacts relating to childhood in Ireland over the last hundred years, is on display at Clare Museum until next Easter.

The exhibition, which is free to the public, provides an opportunity for all ages to delve into the toy box of youth and relive the memories from a past childhood.

The exhibition features items such as old school books from the 1920s and toys from more recent decades, including a Barbie doll, games and toy cars, all on loan from the Monaghan County Museum.

However, in an unusual twist, the exhibition is to have an interactive element designed to put a Clare stamp on the display. ‘We are looking for loans of toys, school items, comics or clothes from the people of Clare, along with a story from the donor’s childhood to add to the display’, says museum curator John Rattigan. ‘We’ll consider items from any age group, including from Clare people born in other counties or overseas, for inclusion for the duration of the exhibition’.

Also, Clare Museum is providing a digital education pack for primary schools on the Seen But Not Heard exhibit, with fun activities for classes of all ages, including games from the past, a make-your-own-museum project and activity sheets for the exhibit.

The exhibition, which has toured Ireland, is an initiative from the Local Authority Museums Network, which is made up of the 13 museums around Ireland that are funded by local authorities, including Clare Museum.

The 13 curators meet throughout the year to discuss how best to promote and protect the cultural heritage and historical richness of their regions. It was through the collaboration of this network and funding from the Heritage Council and the Department of Arts, Sports and Tourism that this exhibition is possible.

In addition, on Friday night, Clare Museum will host a showing of the film Night at the Museum at 7.30pm for children aged seven to 12 years. There will be popcorn and a drink available to all children and adults can participate in a guided tour of the museum at 8pm.

For further enquiries, contact 065-6823382 or email

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