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The Collection at Caldicot Castle

Caldicot Castle is a registered museum with a small collection. The nature of the building means that relatively little of this is on display at present, although it is hoped that displays can be planned in the future.

When Chepstow Rural District Council purchased Caldicot Castle from the Cobb family in 1963 they also acquired furniture, fittings and other decorative objects which the family had used to furnish the castle while it was their home (from the 1880s to the 1940s). The "Cobb Collection" also includes a number of costumes, with some fine examples of men and women's eighteenth century dress.

Another aspect of the collection reflects a major interest of Joseph Cobb and his son Geoffrey Wheatly Cobb. HMS Foudroyant, Nelson's Mediterranean flagship was rescued and restored by the two men, as was its successor HMS Trincomalee, renamed HMS Foudroyant and used as a training ship on which a number of local boys served. Large objects from the original Foudroyant include the ship's figurehead (currently stored off-site) and a cannon. Smaller items include objects made from salvaged materials after it was wrecked. This core collection is the nucleus of the castle's collection and the existing range attracted more additions, such as furniture, costume and items relating to HMS Foudroyant.

The castle also houses a small collection of social history material of local interest, relating to Caldicot and the surrounding villages, including photographs as well as paper material and object collections. This collection has been extended recently to include objects and photographs relating to the castle's tenants in the 1950s and 60s.

Archaeological material includes Roman pottery and other Roman items, finds from the Severn estuary and material recovered from the castle itself during maintenance work. The most significant excavated material, of national importance, comes from the "lake site" in Caldicot Castle Country Park. This waterlogged site produced a large quantity of worked wood, as well as environmental evidence, bone, some metalwork and pottery.

Conservation

Conservation staff and curators work with the museums service collections to store them safely, to research and record information and to interpret them through exhibitions, electronic media, events and activities.

The condition of an object is assessed before it goes on display and specialist conservation techniques used to keep it stable and safe. Conservation and collection care involve maintaining a stable environment, free of pollution and pests for both storage and display. Each artefact will require specific levels of heat, light, and humidity in order to ensure it may be enjoyed by future generations.

Events at the Castle

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