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The charity making life better by water

Unlocking Hidden Stories

Unlocking Hidden Stories delves deep into the diverse array of objects in our collection.

We care for more than 15,000 items across our museums and attractions, representing the most comprehensive history of inland waterways in the UK, and the largest in the world.

Visitors can see and experience our collections across three museum sites at Ellesmere Port, Gloucester and Stoke Bruerne. We already know so much about the objects on display and each of these has a unique and diverse story to tell.

Unlocking Hidden Stories seeks to discover the intangible histories and the human narratives embedded in our collection. The project explores how memory and objects are inexplicably linked and how our memories are stored within objects and objects arouse our nostalgic memories.

Listen up

So far, we have drawn upon the expert knowledge of our staff and volunteers, who have helped us uncover new stories and enabled us to better understand and interpret the collection.

Want to hear some of the stories gathered so far? Listen to them here.

Collection database access

Making our collection accessible online! As part of Unlocking Hidden Stories we have been working behind the scenes to make a section of the collection accessible online. This will allow visitors to find out about their favourite items from the comfort of their own devices.

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This project is supported by Arts Council England through the Designation Development Fund.

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Last Edited: 17 August 2023

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