The collection, which was housed at Dudley Museum and Art Gallery until the building’s closure in 2016, was bequeathed to the town by former MP and coroner for Dudley, Brooke Robinson.
It was due to open to the public just as covid hit but this was pushed back until now. Members of The Brooke Robinson Volunteers have been busy working in the background to get the collection ready for display. It is now open to the public every Wednesday from 11am-3pm at Himley Hall.
The eclectic collection was originally kept in a purpose-built room in the Town Hall, before it was moved to the museum in 1979. It includes a range of 17th, 18th and 19th century British and European paintings, furniture and ceramics. Bilston enamels, commemorative medals, Greek, Roman and Egyptian pottery and personal memorabilia relating to Brooke Robinson and his two wives also feature.
Some of the more famous items shown in the original museum were family oil paintings: 'Flowers in a Pottery Vase' by Jan Van Os; 'Landscape with Rivulet and Bridge' - attributed to Richard Parkes-Bonington; and 'Landscape and River View' attributed to Richard Wilson. A painting of special local interest is entitled 'Smoke Room Dudley Arms, 1825' by W. J Pringle (1829). Volunteers have selected a range of items including a cabinet of curiosities, paintings, costume and uniforms. There are also information panels about Brooke Robinson his political career and his life in Dudley in the 1800s.
Councillor Simon Phipps, cabinet member for regeneration and enterprise, said:
"The Brooke Robinson collection has always been a little gem in the museum’s wider collection. We’re really glad that it’s now back on display.
"The Brooke Robinson Volunteers have worked really hard to get the collection ready to view and I hope people stop by the collection now it’s open to the public."
More information on the Brooke Robinson Collection.