Museums tell our stories and hold our histories

What is the role of a museum? The traditional role of museums is to collect objects and materials of cultural, religious and historical importance, preserve them, research them and present them to the public for the purpose of education and enjoyment.

Whether they are national or local in focus, museums cherish the stories important to a community. Some of those stories are well known and some of them might be hidden and need to be brought to the surface. When a community knows its own stories - not just the whitewashed version but the warts and all kind, - we develop a deeper appreciation of our place and who we are as a result of our experiences as a community.

A good museum tells engaging stories and narratives that capture our interest and imagination, taps into our emotions and prompt us to think more deeply and ask questions about the past, present and future of our region. For example, why do we have refugees in Coffs? How are we protecting our natural environment? What kind of innovations are going on in food production?

How have museums changed? Banish the idea of fusty, dusty old museums which focus more on objects rather than stories. Museums are still institutions which collect and safeguard artefacts, but they now use multimedia technology such as touchscreens and touch tables, as well as film and audio to engage visitors in meaningful and interesting ways.

Museums have become more hands on as well, with many providing opportunities for interactive activities. The new museum will host an interactive space where visitors of all ages can sign up for a workshop and learn valuable new skills such as how to look after their family photos and collections, how to handle historical objects and much more.

What can we look forward to in our new museum? Our new museum will be contemporary, highly visual and will showcase many more of the fascinating items in the museum’s collections, including historical artefacts, photographs and multi-media resources. Visitors will be engaged, surprised and energised by what they experience.

Our new museum will be a one-of-a-kind visitor experience, not only for Coffs Harbour locals, who will feel proud of our histories and stories on display, but for visitors to the area who will be drawn to the unique cultural destination as part of their stay on the beautiful Coffs Coast.

Image by: and the trees photography

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