The Passion of Rugby League Comes to Museum of Wigan Life

The Passion of Rugby League Comes to Museum of Wigan Life

The excitement and passion of rugby league through the game’s rich history will be encapsulated in a new Wigan Borough exhibition.

To mark the reopening of the Museum of Wigan Life later this month, Wigan Council will unveil the ‘gerrumonside!’ experience.

It will see the ground floor of the museum completely reimagined to house a curated exhibition focused on the sport, celebrating its past and present both within the borough and internationally.

Visitors will follow our local teams’ trophy-filled histories and learn how Wigan, Leigh and Tyldesley broke away from the Rugby Football Union in 1895 and formed the Northern Union.

Councillor David Molyneux, leader of Wigan Council, said: “This will be a complete celebration of rugby league and it will showcase how the sport has helped shape our borough and its people.

“Visitors should be prepared for a completely unique experience that will not only demonstrate our borough’s connection to rugby but also immerse guests in the feeling of being part of the game during its most pivotal moments.

“We hope this will be the first of many new cultural experiences that will redefine what people think of when they imagine visiting the Museum of Wigan Life.”

The exhibition features more than 100 pieces of memorabilia, made possible through the generosity of dozens of collectors, players and fans who museum staff have had the privilege to work with.

Visitors will experience new large scale dynamic displays, a programme of talks and events, and regular family-friendly activities. There will also be dedicated space where visitors can relax, sit and watch old game footage, enjoy spending time with others and sharing memories and stories.

Themes of the exhibition will range from the history of the game and the sport’s link to the identity of Wigan and Leigh, to the women’s game, disability rugby and grassroots and amateur clubs. There will also be events to celebrate the Rugby League World Cup next year and the 150th anniversary year of Wigan Warriors.

The exhibition forms the first stage of an ambitious programme to reimagine the museum. A consultation involving visitors and partners will help shape the future use of the space with a view to enabling more people to see and experience more of the museum’s amazing collection of objects.

Councillor Chris Ready, portfolio holder for culture, said: “So much hard work has gone into this rugby league exhibition, and I can’t wait to see residents and visitors from further field alike visiting the Museum of Wigan Life.

“We would also love to hear from residents about their own memories of rugby in Wigan Borough. Come and tell our team about them when you visit and add them to our fan wall or you can email them to us and we can add them for you.”

The ‘gerrumonside!’ exhibit will open on Saturday November 27. As well as a new look, new opening times will be in operation with increased hours.

The Museum of Wigan Life will now operate Tuesday to Saturday between 10am and 4pm. Entry to the museum will remain free however some talks and events may have a charge.

To send in your memories, email wiganmuseum@wigan.gov.uk and we will display them in the museum.

Posted on Monday 15th November 2021
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