Events Derwent Pencil Museum

Published on May 25th, 2017 | by Michelle Roper-Shaw

Derwent Pencil Museum Reopens

Tomorrow sees the Derwent Pencil Museum open its doors again for the first time in 18 months. After the devastating Cumbrian floods back in 2015 the museum now has a new look and some new great activities for visitors to enjoy.

Home to amongst other things, the world’s largest colour pencil, the Derwent Pencil Musuem in Keswick reopens just in time for the Spring Bank Holiday weekend, on Friday 26th May.

The Cumbrian floods caused much damage to this popular tourist site. Many artifacts were damaged beyond repair. However, staff did a wonderful job in saving many precious pieces, including an Austin Morris 1952 which delivered pencils to customers in days gone by.

A New Interactive Visitor Experience

Visitors to the new look museum will be able to take part in an array of exciting activities. With a new customized drawing facility, children and adults alike can take advantage of art workshops and classes.

For the first week of its reopening, from 26th May to 4th June, a series of drawing classes are scheduled. Various artists will share their knowledge and skills with everyone who attends.

In addition to this, of course there are many exhibits to enjoy including:

  • The world’s largest colour pencil, measuring 8 metres in length
  • Secret World War 2 pencils with hidden maps, commissioned by MI5
  • Miniature pencil sculptures
  • The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee pencil.

Derwent’s Long Drawn Out History

Pencil manufacturing has been part of the Cumbrian landscape for centuries. Graphite from the nearby Seathwaite mine was originally discovered over 350 years ago. The Derwent factory began making pencils back in 1832 and is now home to the Derwent Pencil Museum.

Derwent pencils have been a favourite brand amongst artists and illustrators for many years. In fact, Raymond Briggs, creator of the perennial Christmas favourite, The Snowman used Derwent pencils in his enchanting illustrations, celebrated in the Limited Edition ChildLine 20th Anniversary Stamp Sheet.

For more details on the Derwent Pencil Museum, visit the Derwent Art website for opening times and directions.

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