Salisbury Museum, 2024

Salisbury Museum has been awarded the Elizabeth Hammond Grant in 2024 for the conservation and display of the two key pieces in the Salisbury Gallery; a rare women's riding habit from the turn of the 18th century and a military uniform jacket that belonged to William Wyndham, a significant figure in the Salisbury Swing Riots of 1830.

The Salisbury Museum is three years into an exciting five-year redevelopment plan called ‘Past Forward’, focussed on sharing the history of Salisbury and southWiltshire from 1220 to the present day with a wider audience. The project culminates in the opening of three new galleries in 2024. The largest of the new galleries will be the Devenish Bradshaw Salisbury Gallery, on the ground floor of the museum.

Central to the Salisbury Gallery is a rotating costume display exploring how wider social change from the 17th to the early 19th century impacted the city and day to day lives of residents. The acclaimed fashion and textile collection will be critical to people's enjoyment and understanding of this.

The riding habit will form the centrepiece of a rotating display of fashion exploring entertainment, leisure, and personal identity in Salisbury in the Georgian period. The characteristic features of the riding habit that originated in menswear will help us to explore the way that gender roles were both enforced and contradicted through women's sporting attire.

The Wiltshire Yeomanry jacket which belonged to William Wyndham will form the centrepiece of the display case telling the local story of the 1830 Swing Riots. Thelocal riots culminated in the bloody Battle of Pyt House, near Tisbury in November 1830. These were led by William Wyndham and his troop of Hindon Yeomanry so the jacket gives us a uniquely personal and direct link to someone who was present. It will be juxtaposed with a smock – another item from the museum collection. The two items will visually tell visitors about the two opposing sides and bring the story to life, highlighting the power imbalance between the agricultural labourer in his simple smock (who would have been on foot and armed with makeshift weapons), against a Wiltshire Yeomanry in his official uniform (who would have been on horseback with sword and gun).

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