Monday, 11 August 2014

Ex-museum professionals join Fairlynch team: 2.Martyn Brown

“Fairlynch is one of the finest buildings in Budleigh, being distinguished by its thatched roof and cupola. It has the great benefit, for a museum, of being visible from the main street,” says Martyn Brown. “It’s ideal for its purpose.” 

Well, he should know, his whole career having been spent in the heritage sector.

A recent arrival in Budleigh, Martyn is no stranger to the West Country. Educated at Sherborne School, he read Geography at Cambridge and has a Degree in Fine Art from the University of Plymouth. Nine years followed in Glastonbury, where he was responsible for creating the Somerset Rural Life Museum as its first curator. He then spent three years as CEO of the Jersey Heritage Trust and Director of Museums on the island. For 23 years he was a senior manager with Oxfordshire County Council, responsible for management and leadership of museums and heritage services.

Martyn has always enjoyed hands-on museum experience. “I have curated numerous exhibitions – some of these I have initiated and created myself, others I have managed and coordinated with artists and craft workers.” 

His experience has included partnership projects with curators and artists in Germany, Portugal and Greece, where he managed a variety of events and educational programmes including conferences, seminars, workshops, demonstrations, music and theatre performances. Further foreign heritage experience has involved working as an advisor to teams in South Africa, St Lucia and Ukraine.

Martyn is keen to see further refurbishment at Fairlynch. “The new ‘Environment’/Priscilla Carter Room illustrates very well what can be done,” he enthuses. “Even in its unfinished state it represents a massive improvement – it is ‘a breath of fresh air.’ The interior architecture of the room is respected, the arched windows a strong feature. The displays complement the room and should do even more when the current cases are replaced.”

To find our team boosted by the arrival of such well-qualified trustees is really good news. Especially as they are retired local residents who think that their move to Budleigh was one of the best things that they’ve done. 



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