Hello, my name is Sarah and I am based at Worcester’s iconic Hive building, working with the Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service.
It has been a busy few weeks. I have been learning about what everyone in this large team does. I have shadowed some staff and taken tours with others. I attended Manual Handling training with my new colleagues and have been helping with emailed enquiries, advising customers at the Explore the Past desk, and delivering inductions for new users of the service.
I took time out from all this learning to help the team by redesigning the shop display beside the Explore The Past Desk. This involved rearranging the existing display of World War One memorabilia: mainly Illustrated Supplements to the Berrow’s Worcester Journal, and filling the remaining cases with books and merchandise.
The books that are sold through the Explore the Past desk cover a multitude of subjects, from how to do research, to research already done on local people and places. There is also a selection of reproduction historic jewellery and pots.
First, I took a look through the stock that was available, and the bits and bobs I could use to prop up books or highlight jewellery. Then I put the books into themed piles which I felt went well together, before putting each theme in a separate shelf of the cases. Now there are a couple of drinking-themed sections (complete with reproduction mugs), and sections for different local places such as Droitwich and Bromsgrove, local people, and local businesses. Meanwhile, the regimental and war-themed books are sitting beside the Illustrated Supplement pages.
It was great to have a little project I could really get my teeth into for the whole day, working out the content and designing the display. I also had to remember to ensuring the price tags showed clearly. I kept a regular check from the front of the display to make sure it looked as good as I imagined it to be.
This was an important job for the department, and, as I was to discover, it takes a lot of staff time to rearrange the display. I especially enjoyed visitors peering in at the cases while I was rearranging them; I have not previously noticed so many people looking at the cases before, but moving the display around really caught their eyes.
Now I am starting to think about what we could do differently for Christmas time….