Happy New Year!
Since a new year has just rolled over, I thought now was a good time to tell you what we have been up to since The MAD Museum opened last March and also to mention a little about our plans for the year ahead.
The MAD Museum opened its doors on 23rd March 2012 but has already become one of the most popular attractions in Stratford upon Avon with over 13,000 people coming through the doors in only 9 months.
Visitors can submit their reviews on the website or at the museum. Our Trip Advisor page has received 48 reviews, of which 37 people selected excellent or very good in response to their visit. We also reply to all reviewers to let them know we appreciate their comments and to answer any queries.
Forbes Magazine’s ‘Top 10 List of Things Not to Miss in England This Year!’
Mercure Hotels Microsite: ‘Local Secrets’.
Local Newspapers: Stratford Observer, Stratford Herald, Coventry Telegraph and Kenilworth Weekly News
Regional Magazines: Cotswold Preview, Warwickshire Living, Live 24-Seven and What’s On Warwickshire
National Magazines: Coach Monthly, School Travel Today, Getaway Magazine and Group Travel Today
Radio: Founder Richard Simmons was interviewed twice on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire and has also featured on the prestigious BBC Radio 2 Art Show with Claudia Winkleman.
Online Presence and Social Networks:
The MAD Museum’s website receives around 3,000 visitors per month and a new redesign and upgrade includes:
• promotional video
• events page
• an online shop
• Twitter and Facebook feeds
YouTube: MAD Museum promotional video has received over 2,000 views.
Facebook and Twitter pages continue to build a fan base with over 650 followers.
Tesco: The museum joined the Tesco Clubcard Rewards scheme in July and over 400 vouchers have been bought by Tesco Clubcard holders.
Mad Science: Mad Science and The MAD Museum recently joined forces to offer a unique and exciting educational school trip package.
The award winning British novelist and playwright Sue Townsend, the author behind the famous Adrian Mole books, came to The MAD Museum with her husband.
The Sophie Lancaster Foundation used The MAD Museum premises as the back-drop for their 2013 Steampunk Calendar.
Stratford’s MP, Nadhim Zahawi kindly visited The MAD Museum shortly after opening.
The MAD Museum has created special keystage 1-4 workpacks for schools. This has generated many school trips in order to help children understand mechanics and design, while having fun completing quizzes.
The museum offers an inspirational visit but also an educational experience. Many schools have booked visits with art students, design and technology classes and even science groups. Whatever the age, our steampunk-inspired tour guide, Curtis, is great with pupils of all ages and is highly knowledgeable about the museum’s exhibits.
We regularly send over 800 letters to schools throughout the Midlands with information about our school trips, education packs and group deals. Quarterly newsletters are also emailed to schools.
We often have requests from local Beavers, Scouts, Brownies and Guide groups for raffle prizes and we always provide free entry tickets. We have donated tickets to many local schools and PTA requests for fairs and fund raisers.
We invited all of the local businesses, attractions and accommodation associates to our launch party in March 2012.
We have held a number of private tour events for local businesses, bed and breakfast owners and familiarisation tours.
We support local events such as the Stratford Fringe, The Stratford School Christmas Choir Competition and Kenilworth Art Fair.
We also hired students from Stratford College to create our official promotional video for the museum.
The museum has proudly worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company for their Christmas production of ‘The Mouse and his Child’. The museum provided two exhibits for the reception hall displays to reflect the clockwork theme.
The MAD Museum will work with the Swan Theatre in 2013, for their production of A Life of Galileo. With physics and science being the theme and the museum is ideally placed to work with them.
Partnership the Tourist Information Centre (TIC)
The museum is dedicated to forming excellent relationships with those organisations which meet with visitors to Stratford. All of the staff at the TIC visited the museum and as well as displaying our leaflets, they sell discounted tickets to the museum and show the promotional video throughout the day.
The museum invited all the Town Hosts for a private tour, as they have a great deal of personal contact with new visitors to the town.
Town Walks Partnership
The museum partners with a range of organised tourist walks around the town of Stratford which include discounted offers for the museum.
In order to encourage further promotion and local interest there are regular competitions:
• Find hidden items in the museum: MAD Inventor, Jubilee Flags
• Kenilworth Art Fair and Lizbot
• Halloween Design Competition
To sum it all up….
After only 9 months the museum has received over 13,000 visitors and is looking forward to a very exciting 2013. The reviews and feedback received has been overwhelmingly positive which shows that the museum fulfils and often exceeds the expectations of its visitors. The museum attracts interest from children right through to grandparents, there is no target age group as each exhibit everyone something to appreciate and delight in.
The museum will continue to support the local town through events, organisations, charities, groups and schools in order to ensure that everyone can experience the museum itself but also the team which greets them.
In a town where there is understandably a lot of focus on the theatre and Shakespeare, the MAD Museum offers a wholly different proposition and one which provides a superbly engaging and interactive experience for all ages, young and old!
A big thank you to everyone who helped The MAD Museum in 2012! May the success continue…..