Rural Reads review #5: The Last Runaway by Tracy Chevalier

Written by Adam Koszary, Project Officer. We had to take February off for Rural Reads this year, which allowed us plenty of time to stew on our latest book: The Last Runaway. Its author, Tracy Chevalier, is probably better known for her other historical novel Girl with a Pearl Earring, since adapted into a movie. Set in the […]

Weekly What's On: 31st March to 6th April

You can find full details of all our forthcoming events and activities in our What’s On and MERL Families guides, which are now available from the Museum or to download from our website You can also see all events on our online calendar Reading University College: WW1 and beyond Tuesday 1st April to 31 August, 2014 Staircase hall, MERL Free, drop-in, normal museum […]

Guest post: Our Country Lives project goes global with a ‘Stitch in Time’

MERL Fellow, Dr Jane McCutchan has written a guest post about her project with ‘Permeate’ trainee, Genell Watson, to encourage more visitors to MERL by local people with a BAME background Local community and wider audiences are at the heart of our re-display and there are many chances to influence how we explore English rural […]

My Favourite Object #5: ‘Four Hedges', a book by Clare Leighton

By Fiona Melhuish, UMASCS Librarian The wood engravings of Clare Leighton (1898-1989) were among the most exceptional examples of the art form produced during the revival of the art of wood engraving in the 1930s. She illustrated numerous books, several of which she had also written, and wrote a manual on her craft entitled Wood-Engraving and Woodcuts, published in […]

Weekly What's On: 24 to 30th March

You can find full details of all our forthcoming events and activities in our What’s On and MERL Families guides, which are now available from the Museum or to download from our website You can also see all events on our online calendar  #MuseumWeek Join us this week for a virtual event over on Twitter. MERL is joining museums across Europe in […]

MERL on Twitter: from dabbling to #MuseumWeek

Alison Hilton, MERL Marketing Officer, looks back at 5 years of MERL on Twitter and forward to an exciting @TwitterUK campaign I have been tweeting for MERL since 2009. I signed up following a training course in which I was introduced to the wonders of social media (Back in the day before I was even […]

Collections Based Research opportunities

There are currently several opportunities to work and study with the University of Reading’s museums and collections: Collections Based Research Programme Director We are seeking an outstanding candidate to be responsible for the formulation, development and delivery of a strategic programme of University of Reading (UoR) collections-based research (CBR). Please see the University website for details of this […]

Weekly What's On: 17th to 23rd March, 2014

You can find full details of all our forthcoming events and activities in our What’s On and MERL Families guides, which are now available from the Museum or to download from our website You can also see all events on our online calendar Seminar series: Untouchable England MERL and the BBC: Rural re-enactment and gestural reconstruction in the 1950s Dr Ollie Douglas, […]

Press release: Science Week is a riot at Uni Museum

Volunteers at the Museum of English Rural Life (MERL) will present a Reading Science Week event with a difference on Saturday 22nd March. Reading Science Week is part of National Science and Engineering Week (NSEW), a ten-day national programme of science, technology, engineering and maths events and activities across the UK aimed at people of […]

Discovering the landscape #3: Milner’s 'Landscape Gardening'

Written by Claire Wooldridge, Graduate Trainee Library Assistant As progress continues to integrate the library and archive of the Landscape Institute into our MERL collections, here’s a brief look at one of our favourite items: The art and practice of landscape gardening by Henry Ernest Milner (London: Simpkin, Marshall, Hamilton, Kent, And Co, 1890). Henry […]

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