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Have Norwich’s smaller museums suffered from Roman popularity?

PUBLISHED: 08:40 16 June 2014 | UPDATED: 08:40 16 June 2014

Trainees get to grips with working for the Norfolk Museums and Archaeology Service, pictured at the Castle Museum. From left, Molly Carter, Sarah Cassell, and Mandie Thrippleton, in the Natural History area. Picture: Denise Bradley

Trainees get to grips with working for the Norfolk Museums and Archaeology Service, pictured at the Castle Museum. From left, Molly Carter, Sarah Cassell, and Mandie Thrippleton, in the Natural History area. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

The huge success of the Roman Empire exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum could be the reason for a fall in visitor numbers at two other city museums, bosses have suggested.

The blockbuster Power and People exhibition, which ran at the castle from February to April was hailed as a triumph, with more than 65,000 visits.

But visitor numbers at Strangers’ Hall and the Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell have fallen by 20pc on the same period last year, according to a report prepared for the Norwich Area Museums Committee tomorrow.

In a briefing paper which will come before committee members, Rachel Kirk, Norwich museums manager, said visits to Norwich Castle were 20pc higher for April and May 2014, compared with the same period last year.

But, with visitors to the other two museums down, she said: “It’s possible that the visitor offer at Norwich Castle which has received so much media coverage has had an impact on the number of visits to the small Norwich museums.

“We are interrogating the ticket information to identify if there have been reductions in particular ticket categories or whether this decrease is across all audiences, and reviewing marketing activities.

“Efforts to improve awareness of the Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell in order to build visitor numbers continue. The Museum remains Trip Advisor’s second best visitor attraction in Norwich.”

Strangers’ Hall and the Museum of Norwich will take part in the Norwich Lanes’ Fayre on Sunday, July 6, while the garden at Strangers’ Hall will feature in the National Gardens Scheme Norfolk Gardens 2014 programme.

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