President: The Rt Hon. Lord Willetts of Havant
I am delighted and honoured to welcome the Rt Hon. Lord Willetts of Havant as the President of the Emsworth Maritime & Historical Trust in succession to the late Dr Margaret Rule. Lord Willetts has been a member of the Trust for many years and has been a regular visitor to the Emsworth Museum over those years, both in his capacity as MP for Havant, perhaps opening a new exhibition for us, and as an interested Trust member just wishing to see what was new in the Museum from time to time. He has always been a keen supporter.
We look forward to greeting him in the Museum in the near future when he is in the local area with time to spare to drop in to see us.
Welcome to the website of Emsworth Museum. The Emsworth Maritime & Historical Trust (EM&HT) administers the museum entirely through the help of volunteers from its membership, and donations from visitors, and local people, businesses and organisations. The museum is fully accredited by the Arts Council, England, and is one of the smallest museums in the country to receive such a prestigious designation.
Emsworth Museum is dedicated to preserving, recording and telling the story of the town and its locality through the triumphs and tragedies of its people, businesses and organisations. Thus the story of the meteoric rise of the oyster industry to national prominence, and its similarly rapid fall occasioned by the demise of the Dean of Winchester, is iconic to the town and the many people and interests that were affected by it. Emsworth too is synonymous with PG Wodehouse who lived, worked and played cricket in the town. The experience left him with a bank of names for characters and places from which his writings were to draw. The museum has the only freely accessible permanent exhibition in the country devoted to his life and work. Other notable displays tell of the work of the acclaimed photographer and recorder of industrial production, Maurice Broomfield, and the achievements of Sir Peter Blake, world-renowned yachtsman.
Despite some notable acquisitions, it is probably true to say that the museum's collection is rather more valued than valuable, more rich in the stories it tells than the artefacts it contains. Rarely does a valuation move one to a smile or a tear so much as a real life story. So come to the town, an attraction in its own right, and visit the museum frequently referred to as "Emsworth's jewel". Entry is entirely free, but donations are welcome. Listen to the tales, discover the story, no matter a tear or a smile, a thoroughly enjoyable experience awaits you.