20th January 2016
Re-interpreting Eltham Palace wins AHI Award
The anticipation of being shortlisted for an AHI award for our work at Eltham Palace finally came to a nail biting end, with this innovative project coming away with the ‘Association for Heritage Interpretation Discover Award’ for the ‘Museums and historic properties/sites’ category.
Amidst strong competition, AHI summarised the project and the reason for awarding this project the winner:
Eltham Palace provides visitors with a startling juxtaposition of stylish 1930s design and medieval architecture set in exquisite grounds. Bishops and monarchs dominate the early stories, wealthy industrialists and their high profile friends the latter. Light touch, flexible and stylish interpretation brings the palace and people to life.
Re-Presenting Eltham Palace won this category because:
“Good dwell time and visitor engagement through a good balance of interpretation without compromising rooms. The project exhibits good layered interpretation, good use of media to enhance key messaging, along with clear aims and themes. It is well executed to create new perspectives on an inflexible space, so getting away from a linear visitor flow.”
“Most visitors were using the media guide and a number of families and more elderly couples engaging together with the spaces and interpretation. (trying on clothes, discussing topics of interest). The media tour one of the best we had seen – broken into easy chapters and layered into interesting elements making use of a variety of media (music, film, reminiscence, key objects) appeals to a broader range of people.”
“Diversifying the interpretation offer has also improved the offer to existing core audiences, and provided more opportunity for the family engagement”
We are mindful that multimedia content – for any audience – should not be created in isolation. It’s important while we’re being creative that we keep the users in mind and think about the fuller visitor experience. That’s why, when we’re commissioned to create content for a specific audience, we try to find out as much as possible about them and the context in which that product will sit. It’s all about creating joined up visitor experiences.
Tripadvisor is a fantastic way to gauge visitor feedback, with the multimedia guide being cited regularly as an important part of the interpretation.