many years they have been building and restoring horse drawn vehicles
at their premises on the outskirts of the village and earned themselves
a considerable reputation for their craftsmanship.
Over the years they have also undertaken lengthy research into their
own family history and have amassed a substantial collection of
personal historic photographs and other ephemera.
It was these personal interests together with a growing demand from
schools and others for more information relating in Romany history
and culture in the area that led to the decision to create a proper
Brazil with a restored London Trolley|
already have an extensive collection of horse drawn caravans, including
some very interesting early examples as well as other carts, traps
and wagons that were traditionally used by Travellers.
They are also keen to ensure that their collection reflects more
recent times and are in the process of acquiring motor drawn trailers
built by companies like Vickers who specialised in the Gypsy market.
This is important because Romany culture requires living accommodation
to be organised in a specific way to comply with traditions relating
to hygiene, cleanliness and food preparation. As well as the layout,
traditional styles of decoration have also been carried through
from the old vardos to the modern Gypsy trailers.
hope to continue to expand the museum and to develop the facilities
to show how life on the road was lived by setting up camps as they
would have been in horse drawn days. As well as the outdoor exhibits
they also plan to add a study room in which talks, slide shows and
films can be shown.
the project is still in its infancy they have already attracted
visitors from around the world. This is in part due to the uniqueness
of the enterprise which is one of only two such museums in the country.
the museum in Marden|
are several places which hold collections of Gypsy wagons but the
Marden Museum aims to become a comprehensive centre dealing with
all aspects of Romany history and culture.
Now that life on the road is but a distant memory for the majority
of Gypsy families it is ever more important to sustain the culture
in its new sedentary form.
Museums such as this will play an important part in reinforcing
museum is still being developed and is very much a working environment,
if you want to ensure that there will be someone there to receive
you, it's best to phone first.
SOUTH EAST ROMANY MUSEUM
Howland Road, Marden Kent TN12 9DH 01622 831681
those further north Gordon Boswell's museum is well worth a visit.
BOSWELL ROMANY MUSEUM
Clay Lake, Spalding, Lincolnshire, PE12 6BL
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