[meersbrook-house] re Meersbrook House

Joyce M Bullivant 1duckweed at live.co.uk
Wed Jul 16 20:07:30 GMT 2014

Sorry I haven't been able to look at Archives but have had a conversation with Ruth Nutter re Ruskin in Sheffield. She unfortunately doesn't know about the negotiations more than me. I do know that before WW2 there was a drive to move the Ruskin Collection out of Meersbrook House. This was an ongoing problem since the parks began. Many councillors felt the Houses in the parks were expensive waste of money. In 1953 the Council put the Ruskin collection into storage while "structural repairs" were carried out. As far as I know no structural repairs were carried out. Newspaper of the time complained of council's cost cutting and said there was some suggestion of the House becoming a Nursery or Child Health centre. Whatever the discussion the Ruskin collection was lost from view to the public for 10 years till the owners the Guild of St. George took the collection back and gave it to Reading University. Only after a lot of public protest did the Council make a gallery for it to go back to. So seems to be that Meersbrook House stopped being a museum not by any agreement but by a slight of hand.
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