Hidden gems from Royal Deeside to go on show

18 June 2014

An exhibition which reveals hidden treasures from Royal Deeside will open to the public on Saturday 21 June at Aberdeen Maritime Museum, Shiprow.

Taking Queen Victoria's first visits and her purchase of Balmoral in 1848 as its starting point, the exhibition will feature some of her letters to the Brown family and other interesting items from Aberdeen's collections.

Queen Victoria exulted in her love for her Highland home and her connections there were very personal. Victoria's influence drew others to Deeside from the wealthy seeking their own Highland estates to tourists and day-trippers who wanted to enjoy the stunning countryside.

The exhibition will explore the popular image of Deeside encouraged by Queen Victoria and her published journals and will look at the lives of ordinary people at work and play on Deeside.

Jenny Brown, curator of the exhibition, Aberdeen Art Galleries & Museums, said: "This is a rare opportunity to see some real highlights from Aberdeen's collections. The display includes letters penned by Queen Victoria to the Brown family alongside more unusual items such as a spade and barrow used to cut the turf for the Deeside Railway line and a piece of the Shakkin' Briggie.

"It's about taking a closer look at what we think we know about Deeside, and hopefully discovering something new."

A free illustrated talk to accompany the exhibition will be held at 12.30pm on Wednesday 13 August at Aberdeen Maritime Museum. Advance booking is essential as places are limited; to book telephone (01224) 337714.

Throughout the summer there will be an opportunity to learn more about Royal Deeside through exciting hands-on family activities at the museum. These activities are free and will take place from 10.30am to 12.30pm, every Saturday from 19 July until 09 August 2014. Full details are available in the museum's summer brochure and online at www.aagm.co.uk

The exhibition runs until Saturday 25 October 2014.