FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Blakesley Hall Garden Party for Friends!
On Sunday 26 June between 3pm and 6pm the Friends of Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery will be celebrating in style at Blakesley Hall, Birmingham’s magnificent Elizabethan Farmhouse in the heart of Yardley. The Friends have been supporting Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery both financially and through their team of volunteers since 1931 and will be celebrating their 80th year with a Garden Party set in the beautiful landscaped gardens and orchard of this historically important hall. Birmingham City Council’s Cabinet Member for Sport, Leisure and Culture, Councillor Martin Mullaney, is a strong supporter of the Friends he says “The Friends give support, in so many ways, to our world class museums. The first recorded acquisition they donated was in 1931, a beautiful hand painted miniature of Princess Mumtaz Mahal; her husband built the very famous Taj Mahal in her memory. More recently, a few of their contributions have been, raising an impressive £25,000 to help research and conserve the historically important Staffordshire Hoard, and the fantastic border, they paid for, at Blakesley Hall designed with plants of the Jacobean period. I hope their important work and support continues for many, many years to come” All good parties must have music and the Friends’ is no exception, light jazz will be played by the trio FJS, students of Birmingham’s Conservatoire, sponsored by Birmingham Investment Managers, Brewin Dolphin. There will also be a tree planting in the orchard to mark the 80th year and a special birthday cake printed with Princess Mumtaz’s portrait. Deborah de Haes says ‘I am honoured to be Chair of the Friends in this the year we are celebrating our 80th anniversary. Since 1931 we have been proud to support Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery both financially and through our team of dedicated volunteers. Money raised by the Friends helps to acquire important works, curate exhibitions, refurbish and build new galleries, conserve collections and develop Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery’s educational programmes. Our important work also assists in ensuring that Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery’s world class museums, at the cultural heart of Birmingham, give pleasure and learning to all visitors for years to come. “ The Hall and Garden will be open to the public as usual until 4pm but if you wish to raise a glass and join in the celebrations from 3pm to 6pm then there are tickets available on the day costing £12 the cost of which is refundable if you join the Friends on the day. The Friends support Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery which include Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, Aston and Blakesley Halls, the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter, Soho House, Sarehole Mill, Weoley Castle Ruins and the Museum Collections Centre. If you wish to find out more about the benefits of joining the Friends please call 0121 303 3129 or email fbmagmembership@googlemail.com

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Date 20 June 2011. Friends Registered Charity No. 528895. For further information contact Gail Jones 07522 969286 gjones393@btinternet.com Friends of Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, Chamberlain Square, Birmingham B3 3DH

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