Royal Deeside hidden gems now on show

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An exhibition which reveals hidden treasures from Royal Deeside opened to the public on Saturday June 21 at Aberdeen Maritime Museum.

Taking Queen Victoria’s first visits and her purchase of Balmoral in 1848 as its starting point, the exhibition will feature some of her letters to the Brown family and other interesting items from Aberdeen’s collections.

The exhibition will explore the popular image of Deeside encouraged by Queen Victoria and her published journals and will look at the lives of ordinary people at work and play on Deeside.

Jenny Brown, curator of the exhibition, Aberdeen Art Galleries & Museums, said: “This is a rare opportunity to see some real highlights from Aberdeen’s collections. The display includes letters penned by Queen Victoria to the Brown family alongside more unusual items such as a spade and barrow used to cut the turf for the Deeside Railway line and a piece of the Shakkin’ Briggie.

“It’s about taking a closer look at what we think we know about Deeside, and hopefully discovering something new.”

Queen Victoria loved Deeside and felt a personal connection with the area. Her influence inspired others to visit Deeside, whether to buy their own Highland estate or drop in for a day.

There will be family activities at the museum over the summer months focusing on the hidden gems of Royal Deeside. These are free and will take place from 10:30am to 12:30pm, every Saturday from July 19 until August 9.

A free illustrated talk to accompany the exhibition will be held at 12:30pm on Wednesday, August 13, at Aberdeen Maritime Museum. Advance booking is essential as places are limited; to book telephone 01224 337714.