Ladies and Gentlemen,
When I wrote in early January we had officially launched the Appeal, established an appeal website www.rhfappeal.co.uk and opened an appeal bank account at the Airdrie Savings Bank.
Since then the steering group –under Sandy Fitzpatrick’s leadership-has been beavering away on a number of fronts and the time is probably right to give you an update of where we are.
Firstly, a big thank you to those such as Alan Roberts, Mike Knox, Nick Channer, Stephen Cartwright and Joe d’Inverno who have started fundraising in response to the Call to Arms and have banked some monies raised. And a huge thanks also goes to the Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada who have given an undertaking to raise £30k for the Museum Appeal and have already sent through a cheque for £5k. There may be other individuals out there who are also embarked on the fundraising journey to their personal targets and I hope very much that you will be able to keep the momentum going for the next three or four years. Hats off too to the Glasgow based Paras, who out of solidarity and camaraderie to us and our museum, have mounted two fundraising days for us outside Glasgow Central Station. I also know that the RHF Veteran’s Branch in Inverness has been busy fundraising. Thank you to one and all!
We now have an undertaking from Glasgow Life –the arms-length organisation within the city responsible for arts and culture- that the new RHF Museum is part of the refurbishment of the Kelvin Hall project and we will be having our first workshop with them on 3 September. This is excellent news as it means that our work in recent years to build a political consensus in Glasgow that the city ‘is’ the natural home for this Collection of ours in the 21st Century has paid off and we will enter the next decade with a new museum which sits at the heart of a shared museum complex in the midst of Glasgow’s Museum Quarter.
We have appointed Campbell and Co www.campbelland.co.uk as our new museum design consultants. The first ‘get to know you session’ was held at Sauchiehall Street last Tuesday and the main effort over the next three months is to conduct a workshop with Glasgow Life and the Hunterian Museum in early Sep and to prepare and submit our HLF Stage 1 Development Fund Bid to the HLF before 27 Nov 15. We will also be conducting concurrent work with Carolyn Lloyd Brown examining the Collection catalogue in detail in order to start the process of interpretive planning with a strong visitor focused approach, family participation and learning at the heart of the experience. There is also work being done with Peter Graham, MD of New Skills Consulting based in Newcastle, who will be the main focus for business development and project planning. The Campbell and Co team have a huge amount of experience in this sector which is very reassuring.
In June and July we had meeting with professional fundraisers in order to scope where we have got to so far and what, in a strategic and organisational sense, needs to be put in place for the big push on the grant-making bodies appeal beyond the HLF. Our next meeting with them is likely to be in October.
There are regular news articles being put up on the website on an almost weekly basis, so do please look out for those if you have access to the internet. On 20 May, Sir Menzies Campbell gave an outstanding talk in aid of the appeal in the City Chambers. He talked about the relationship between the athletic career of Captain Wyndham Halswelle, his own athletic achievements and his relationship with General Roy Urquhart, who was of course his father in law. This talk is to be repeated in Ayrshire later in the year.
Shown below is a computer generated image of Kelvin hall to remind those you less familiar with it of the impressive scale of our new home. We of course will occupy a relatively small area within its cavernous interior. We hope to share storage facilities and conservation expertise with the Hunterian and I hope that satisfactory sharing arrangements can be put in place for merchandising in the museum shop.
Please pass this sitrep on to anyone who you think might not have received a copy.
We will send another message out before Xmas but please do keep thinking about and doing as much fundraising as you can in the weeks and months ahead.
With kind regards,
Major General W E B Loudon CBE
Colonel of the Regiment
Category: Appeal Update