2022 saw a 70% increase in local visitors to Guernsey Museums sites, and a return to near pre-Covid numbers, marking a strong recovery for the organisation.
Guernsey Museum at Candie re-opens on Friday 27th January and the team is hoping to build on what was a very successful 2022, which followed two years of disruption due to Covid.
Helen Glencross, Head of Heritage Services, said: “I am very pleased with the end of year figures for 2022 as they show a strong recovery. There has been a 70% increase in local visitors in 2022 and footfall and income is only 10% off of pre-Covid figures: this is a trend I hope we can maintain.”
“The number of overall tourists has declined slightly, but we continue to attract those visiting the island to our four museum sites. This popularity is reflected in a recent Visitor Survey.”
A short visitor satisfaction survey was designed by Island Global Research, and data collection ran from 11th August to 12th October at Guernsey Museum, Castle Cornet, Fort Grey and the German Naval Signals HQ. The Net Promoter Scores (likelihood they would recommend the site / museum to others) and experience rating scores were very positive across all sites.
In response to the question asked ‘How would you rate your overall experience at the museum today?’, the survey saw a majority of ‘excellent’ scores being given across the board:
- Guernsey Museum and Art Gallery – 90%
- Castle Cornet – 97%
- Fort Grey – 97%
- German Naval – 99%
Mrs Glencross added: “We are absolutely delighted to get these high scores back from our visitor survey. The data and feedback enable us to consider visitor needs so that we can learn and improve”.
The museum in 2023
Guernsey Museum at Candie has been closed through January while work has been going on behind the scenes to improve and upgrade the galleries. New exhibitions will include a local wildlife photography exhibition and a role play area inspired by the French artist Renoir.
In the greenhouse gallery, Guernsey Arts will host the 2023 Bailiwick Wildlife Photography Exhibition, which will be on display from 27th January until 26th March. Following the success of last year’s exhibition, Guernsey Arts invited Bailiwick residents to submit photographs of varied local wildlife again. Within the exhibition, there is also the work of award-winning wildlife photographer and filmmaker Sue Daly, who continues to capture the extraordinary wildlife and breath-taking landscapes of her home island of Sark.
In the Discovery Room, ‘A Picnic with Renoir’ is the new theme for the Timewarp. This role play area is changed every January and will be on display until the end of the year. Visitors can use an easel, look out on the view of Moulin Huet and put together a picnic in the cottage, all from the museum.
In the Foyer there is a display about celebrating the 100-year anniversary of the Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service, including items selected from the reserve collections.
The Brian White gallery remains closed while extra maintenance work continues to upgrade the space. The walls have been re-lined and new flooring will be fitted in the coming weeks.
This upgrading is a considerable investment into future exhibitions at Guernsey Museum at Candie. From 3rd March, the popular Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, on loan from the Natural History Museum, London will start the 2023 programme.
Guernsey Museum at Candie will be open every day from Friday 27th January, 10.00-16.00. Normal admission charges apply, although entry is free with a Discovery Pass. Castle Cornet, Fort Grey and the German Naval Signals HQ will open for the summer on Wednesday 22nd March.