Fika Off

woman holding up an open cookery book

Long before Jamie Oliver, Nigella Lawson or even Fanny Craddock there was Aunt Kate. What do you mean you haven’t heard of her? Well, in all fairness neither had we. In fact, she was probably the creation of John Leng and Co Limited but by using the homely name it helped give the impression that […]

Francis Shriane’s Reflections on Three Years at Coffin Works

Francis and volunteer pose in stockroom

For almost three years I have been volunteering at The Coffin Works in a Conservation/Care of Collection role. This involves cleaning and conserving the collection, taking environmental readings, pest control, training interns and everything in-between. Unfortunately due to my new job I have to take a, hopefully, short hiatus. When seeing the courtyard for the […]

West Midlands Volunteer Awards 2019 – Collections Audit Project

We’re absolutely delighted to announce we are a finalist in the West Midlands Volunteer Awards for 2019. The work of our volunteers on the Coffin Works Collections Audit Project has landed them a place as finalists in the project category and the winner will be announced at an awards ceremony on September 11 at the […]

My Time at the Coffin Works – Scarlett Hall

As a recent University History graduate I started to volunteer at the Coffin Works as part of the Conservation Team. My main partner in this role was someone I already knew from my time volunteering at the Birmingham Back to Backs, Francis Shrianne. Francis became a mentor to me and other volunteers who joined us through […]

Your Nominations Please!

Volunteers stand in a row, holding up coloured sheets of paper spelling out the word "volunteers".

The people at The West Midlands Museum Development are holding their volunteer awards for 2019, which are now open. Here’s some information from them about the awards and how you can make a nomination.   The work of the many dedicated volunteers at more than 130 museums across the West Midlands is truly incredible and […]

Laura, Twice a Volunteer

Two volunteers pull a christmas crackers staning in front of a christmas tree

I started volunteering at the Coffin Works in September 2016, newly graduated from studying history and full of excitement about working in heritage and museums. As someone whose family is from Birmingham (as far back as we can trace!), I was ready to get involved in rediscovering city’s heritage and finding out more. My volunteering […]

Call For Papers – Funeral Study Day 2019

Coffin and coffin furniture on the first floor of the building.

(This is now closed) As part of the annual ‘A Matter of Life and Death’ festival brought to you by BrumYODO, the object of the funeral study day is to bring together academics, funeral industry professionals and the general public, to explore themes of death, dying and celebration of death. Last year the first funeral […]

70 hours at the Coffin Works; my Professional Skills Placement

David in the Warehouse holding a coffin handle to his ear as if a telephone receiver

by David Sugden What can I say? When I was first offered the chance to work at the Coffin Works I didn’t really know what to expect. Before starting my placement,  I had this image in my mind that this heritage museum would only be about coffins and Victorian funeral practises. However, I quickly discovered […]