Rebecca works for Perth Museum & Art Gallery (Culture Perth & Kinross) as a Heritage Learning Officer. Culture Perth & Kinross is responsible for the delivery and development of museum and library services in Perth & Kinross. Over the next few months they will be at the heart of the Perth City of Culture bid 2021 so Rebecca is super busy! Her typical working hours are Monday-Friday 9-5ish, with the occasional weekend thrown in too.
Despite this busy and hectic job she enjoys some downtime and enjoys a good whisky and a game of ultimate frisbee on the Inch!
1. What does a typical day at work look like for you?
One of the things I love about my job is there isn’t really any such thing as a ‘typical’ workday.
One of my responsibilities is the development and delivery of the school programme at CPK’s museums and galleries. This means my day might involve leading a workshop for school pupils visiting the museum learning about Romans, ancient Egypt, medieval Perth, Victorians, Scottish wildlife, art or any number of other topics. I spend time exploring the collections and planning new activities, and communicating with teachers/schools.
I also administer the new Living Communities Participation Fund, a fund generously supported by the Gannochy Trust which enables pupils to explore and interpret their local heritage. A portion of my days in the coming months will be supporting and overseeing these projects as they develop.
Finally, I will be responsible for re-launching the Young Heritage Ambassadors, a legacy of the Living Communities project. This will form a significant part of the City of Culture bid over the next few months and will be an exciting opportunity for pupils to have their say. My workdays in the months ahead will involve lots of community engagement and exploration of local culture and heritage.
In addition to these main tasks, any typical day might see me helping plan or run an event, or find me wandering around Perth Musuem and Art Gallery, The Fergusson Gallery or Alyth Museum as I think up new ideas for family activities. If I’m lucky, a day will find me up to my elbows in paint, glue or glitter!
2. What signals the start of your weekend / days off?
A drink at the Post Box cellar bar!
3. What makes for a perfect night in?
Board games, friends and good food and wine/whisky. My fiancé is a whisky auctioneer so we always have an interesting array of the latter.
4. What makes for a memorable day or night out?
My favourite way to spend a day out is to visit a new place. I’ll happily spend ages flipping through my book of Perthshire walks to find a new one which looks exciting, and then find a town I’ve not been to before nearby to have lunch and explore. For a night out I love exploring the fantastic restaurants Perth has to offer; it’s always a dilemma whether to try a new place or return to my favourites.
5. Tell us about the weekend you’d love to live again?
So many to choose from! I love the weekend. One great weekend that springs to mind was a visit to London last October. We went down for a whisky festival on the Saturday with a small group of friends/colleagues. We stayed in a great flat on Brick Lane, had a fab time at the whisky festival, ate amazing food at a series of great restaurants, visited the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition (an annual favourite of mine!) and just generally had a great time.
6. And now your best ever day at work?
Again a tricky question, especially with my job being so varied. My favourite days are usually the ones when I’m delivering an activity, workshop or event to the public. The best thing about my job is getting to interact with people of all ages and see their reactions to the amazing collections looked after by Culture Perth and Kinross. I love running school workshops and hearing the kids whisper at the end about how much more fun it was than they thought it would be, and hearing their unique reactions and points of view on the objects and artworks they interact with.
A recent day (5 days actually!) that definitely stands out was getting to help install the poppies at The Black Watch Castle and Museum. 14-18NOW were looking for a small team of people with art handling experience to help put together the installation, so my colleague Amy and I were loaned from Perth Museum for a few days to help out. That was an absolutely incredible experience; the poppies are an extremely moving artwork with so many layers of meaning to so many people. Speaking to people as they watched us work and seeing the sculpture come together was amazing.
7. Any workday or weekend rituals?
A lot of my week is structured around various fitness classes/activities, including barre concept and pilates at Balans Pilates Studio in Scone, British Military Fitness on the North Inch and Ultimate Frisbee! Ultimate Frisbee has been a ritual for me since my first week of university; it’s the most fun way to stay fit that I have discovered to date and I would encourage anyone to give it a go. I started the Perth Ultimate club in May 2014 and we play every Thursday evening. We are always looking for new members and I would definitely encourage anyone interested to get in touch or just come along!
8. What’s in the perfect day off breakfast?
A question after my own heart… A really perfect day off involves breakfast either at The Black Watch Museum café or Small Talk. I love a fry up but both places have great alternatives to the full breakfast too – great omelettes at Black Watch in particular.
9. Any words of wisdom for us?
Not sure about wisdom, but one bit of advice I’d give to anyone in the area is to take advantage of what Perth and Kinross has to offer! Anyone will tell you how easy it is to miss what’s on your doorstep, but it is worth exploring all of the amazing places, history and opportunities in this area. I’ve lived in Perth four years now and still have loads to explore.