Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology at Caboolture has bounced back after a couple of tough years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and has a bright future thanks largely to the tenacity of Director Edith Cuffe.
The museum’s iconic Abbey Medieval Festival made a triumphant return in July 2022 and the tourism destination held a number of other events after a COVID-19 hiatus.
A funding package from Moreton Bay Regional Council, in February, came just in time to save this year’s festival which was in danger of being cancelled.
Two years of festival cancellations resulted in the museum running at a significant operating loss, forcing it to draw on operational reserves to fund its operations. With those reserves exhausted, the organisation had been drawing down on limited capital reserve holdings. It was facing a bleak future.
Council provided $150,000 per year for the next two years.
The 2022-23 State Budget provided further good news, committing $2.1 million to the museum, of which $1.7 million will be used to build an art gallery and café and $400,000 will be spent on infrastructure.
It is hoped the art gallery and café will be completed before the 2023 Abbey Medieval Festival.
Edith said it would attract a different audience to the museum site and she hoped visitors would return often to see different collections on display.
“We have a number of collections – the Old Masters Collection has paintings which date back to the 14th century and the Icons Collection dates back to the 13th to 14th century,” she said at the time.
“What this means is that we can change the exhibition more often. We could potentially bring in external exhibitions.
“It allows us to do something that our current museum doesn’t allow us to, so we can attract people to come back and view the art collection and museum collection in a different way.”
Edith said many visitors asked if the venue had a café and she could not wait to be able to offer this facility to enhance their experience.
In her view, there’s something special about discussing art or museum pieces over a cup of coffee.
About Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology
The Abbey Museum is a treasure trove of world history that engages visitors of all ages. When you visit the Museum, you will journey through the centuries from the world of prehistoric hunters to the time of the Industrial Revolution and the Rise of Imperialism.
One of the most fascinating aspects of the museum is the scope of its collections, spanning more than 500,000 years of humankind.
The Abbey Museum annually hosts a rich calendar of events. From the Abbey Medieval Festival to its Regency “Picnic at Pemberley”, there are Egyptian, Medieval, Roman or Viking school holiday programs filled with lots of family fun and historically themed presentations hosted by the Abbey Museum Friends.
For more information visit the website
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