Off to Play at Down County Museum

02 September 2010

Off to Play at Down County MuseumDown County Museum is unveiling a new exhibition, Off to Play, on the theme of toys, games and playtime. The exhibition will open on 2 July and will provide visitors with an opportunity to see some of the wonderful toys and games from the museum’s collection.

Since it was established in 1981, the museum has been collecting toys and games from all eras. The collection now includes toys ranging from elaborate and very well preserved Victorian dolls, Edwardian ‘instructional’ games and early twentieth century dolls’ houses and teddy bears to Action Man dolls, Barbies, jigsaws, train sets, model cars and tv themed toys from the recent past. Off to Play will showcase the most important of these and has been designed to appeal to all ages from small children who love to look at all kinds of toys to older visitors who may remember playing with some of those from years gone by.

The emphasis of the exhibition is how, despite the dominance of electronic toys in today’s market, children’s play has remained remarkably similar over time. Children of all ages love to play and use their imagination and can make toys and games from the most unlikely sources. The illustrations and photographs in the exhibition show outdoor play as well as indoor play and so provide a good contrast to the toys on display. Off to Play is sure to be popular with both children and adults and makes the museum an ideal day out this summer. The play theme is continued with the museum’s other summer exhibition, Sporting Heroes which celebrates the sporting achievements of Ulster’s and County Down’s accomplished sportsmen and sportswomen.

Off to Play opens at Down County Museum on 2 July. The exhibition will be open daily and admission is free.

For further details or if you have toys which could add to our collection please contact Madeleine McAllister or Lesley Simpson at Down County Museum.