The Clerk in the Country

Tuesday 17th March 2020
Farewell to the Lodge

After our decision to comply with government advice for people to work from home where possible, I locked up the Lodge and set off across the Gardens under an increasingly gloomy sky with a trolley load of files and stationery topped by the office plant. Snippets of conversation overheard from the people I passed revealed the general mood: “I’ve explained to her that she needs to self-isolate”, “… desperate for volunteers …”, “My husband has COPD”. I was pleased to see that the office plant raised a few smiles.

The Museum Gardens will now prove to be even more “a treasure not to be sacrificed”. In a city of deserted streets, with museums and art gallery closed and the need to restrict our movements, here are history, archaeology, artefacts, the art of gardeners and mosaic maker, space, fresh air and abundant life. It is a comfort to remember that the multangular tower and abbey have stood here through countless human crises. The Museum was founded in a spirit of enquiry by the predecessors of those scientists around the world who are right now observing, collating, comparing, testing, trialling, asking the questions … and finding the answers.