Cynon Valley Museum
A space for communities
The Cynon Valley Museum has sought to establish itself in Cynon Valley since its reopening in 2016.
The museum has worked to host local artists and art groups, recruit volunteers locally reflect the community, and make the museum more relevant to the daily lives of the public, creating new ways to bring people through the museum’s doors.
To do this the museum sought to move beyond the restrictions of its own identity, to reflect the identities of the communities in Cynon Valley by utilising the museum as a venue for organisations working to benefit the local community.
The museum took a proactive approach to this, building relationships with potential groups such as Project Unity, a LGBTQIA support group. Working with the group they expanded their programming from monthly coffee afternoons to include talks, awareness events and displays in the museum.
Over a three-year period, the museum increased room use by 460% from 205 hours in the 12 months to March 2018 to 965 hours over an 11-month period to February 2020.
The museum has become a centre of the community and witnessed a diversification of purpose, becoming relevant to the people of Cynon Valley. The museum has also become a classroom, meeting space, playgroup, support group, yoga class and more.
The museum has grown, it has learnt more about its community, becoming more inclusive on this journey. It has become a space for many needs, it has become a canvas for our communities’ co-existing identities.