Cold volunteers at Dr Jenner's House

Boiler Update

Thanks to all of you for your support so far with our campaign to replace the museum’s ancient boiler. With nearly 50% of the funds raised we decided to press ahead with the boiler works, which commenced yesterday. With hopes for a busy half term opening next week and concerns about tumbling temperatures, we really had to act quickly. We still need your help to raise the remaining £4,500, as without this our finances will be stretched and we will have to divert funds away from our other work to celebrate the life of Edward Jenner. Please continue to tell others about our campaign!

Donate Now

Or you can send a cheque (payable to “The Jenner Trust”) to Dr Jenner’s House, Church Lane, Berkeley, GL13 9BN. For more information about supporting us, please click here.

A Great Westerner

We are delighted that Edward Jenner has been selected as one of the top 50 “Great Westerners”, following a competition run by Trinity Mirror newspapers and the rail company, GWR. These top 50 Great Westerners are to have one of GWR’s new railway locomotives named after them, so the name Edward Jenner will become even more familiar across the South West.

Dr Timothy Wallington, Chair of The Jenner Trust said:

“It is entirely fitting that Edward Jenner has been honoured amongst the many visionary individuals this region has produced. His painstaking work in understanding the machinery of disease, which has had one of the most significant humanitarian impacts of all time in overcoming smallpox, is an inspiring example to us all.”

The new Class 800 Intercity Express Trains, built by Hitachi, were launched on 16 October and will be rolled out across the GWR network over the course of the next year.

Cold volunteers at Dr Jenner's House

Cold Weather Blues

We need your help to protect Dr Jenner’s House, Museum and Garden and ensure it can open to visitors this winter.

We urgently need to raise in the region of £8,500 to replace the central heating boiler in Edward Jenner’s former home, following the demise of our old system: a museum piece in itself! Central heating is vital to help us regulate the humidity inside the house, keeping safe this internationally important building and its collections. Without a new boiler, this landmark building will be at risk, as will our work sharing Jenner’s remarkable legacy and providing all manner of activities for the local community.

Donate Now

Or you can send a cheque (payable to “The Jenner Trust”) to Dr Jenner’s House, Church Lane, Berkeley, GL13 9BN. For more information about supporting us, please click here.

With your help we can continue to preserve Dr Jenner’s House for many winters to come.

An Irreplaceable Building

We’re celebrating again this week after learning that the Temple of Vaccinia was chosen by Historic England for Irreplaceable: A History of England in 100 Places, sponsored by Ecclesiastical.

The building, located in the grounds of the museum, was one of ten locations in the Science and Discovery category chosen by Professor Lord Robert Winston from a shortlist of public nominations. Originally designed by Jenner’s friend Robert Ferryman as a summer house, the rustic building was repurposed by Jenner as a location to freely distribute his new vaccine against smallpox, one of the most feared diseases of its time. Jenner’s research, which demonstrated that deliberate infection with the mild disease cowpox could prevent people from catching smallpox, was published in 1798 and less than 200 years later smallpox was declared eradicated.

You can hear more about all ten locations in the Science and Discovery category on Historic England’s podcast, which features our Museum Manager.

Design our 2017 Christmas Card!

Ever fancied seeing your artwork decorating mantelpieces up and down the land? Well, now’s your chance. We’re looking for someone to design the front of our 2017 Christmas card.

To enter, send your original design in JPEG format to info@edwardjenner.co.uk. This must be your own work but can be in any medium: digital, watercolour, acrylic or otherwise. Designs should fit in a square measuring 148mm x 148mm (14.8cm, 5.82 inch). The competition closes at 23:59 on Sunday 29th October, so get those creative caps on.

By entering this contest, you are confirming you accept the Terms & Conditions of entry.

Volunteers win Marsh Award

We are very pleased to announce that our volunteer team are the South West regional winners of the prestigious Marsh Volunteer Awards.

The awards, which recognise the hugely valuable contribution volunteers make in helping museums engage with their visitors, are organised by the British Museum and the Marsh Christian Trust and are now in their ninth year.

There were a large number of applications from across the UK, some from groups of volunteers and some from individuals. Volunteers at Dr Jenner’s House, Museum and Garden were praised for their contributions across all areas of the museum’s work, from delivering attic tours to visitors, fundraising on the museum’s behalf, and designing and building the museum’s Physic Garden. We were able to celebrate their achievements in a special ceremony at the British Museum where Brian Marsh OBE, Chairman of the Marsh Christian Trust, and Sir Richard Lambert, Chairman of the British Museum, presented them with their award.

In addition to the twelve regional winners, the ‘Never Going Underground’ Volunteer Community Curators at People’s History Museum, Manchester, and the Scruton Station Volunteers Team, Wensleydale Railway Association Trust, North Yorkshire were named as joint national winners. A huge congratulations to all of the winners; we were treated to some incredibly inspiring stories during the awards ceremony.

We now hope that others will join the team so we can achieve even greater things over the coming years. There will be a special open day for people to find out about volunteer opportunities at the museum and meet current volunteers on 26 October from 10:00 until 16:00. Anyone interested in attending can find out more by emailing info@edwardjenner.co.uk or calling the Museum Office on 01453 810631.

Help us to uncover the history of Dr Jenner’s House

In 2017 we embarked upon a year of discovery at Dr Jenner’s House, Museum and Garden. As part of the EU-funded REVEAL Project, we are attempting to reconstruct (through the wonders of virtual reality technology) the fabric of The Chantry as it was at the time of Jenner’s death.

The project has already vexed us and challenged everything we thought we knew about the building. Windows and doors have moved, rooms have changed use, staircases have been diverted…! However we are making good progress and look forward to sharing the fruits of our research very soon.

First, we have one significant challenge to overcome. With limited sources and very little of the original fabric of the building remaining we are struggling to identify how Jenner would have decorated his walls. This is where we need your help! We have found three fragments of wallpaper in the house. One hidden behind coat hooks in a downstairs passageway and the other two decorating the former servants’ quarters in the attics. We believe the latter fragments were off-cuts from elsewhere in the house.

We’re very keen to identify these fragments. Most importantly, are they likely to date from Jenner’s time in the house or from later occupants? If they are of the period, do they come from recognisable patterns? And which rooms might they have originally decorated?

If you think you can help us out, or point us in the right direction, please email info@edwardjenner.co.uk. We’d be delighted to hear from you!

Thanks for your Jennerosity

In 2016, we launched our Jennerosity Appeal to try and secure £20,000. Due in part to significant and sometimes unexpected maintenance costs (such as the unfortunate demise of the museum’s boiler in 2016), and despite reducing operational expenditure to the absolute minimum, the museum has operated at a deficit for a number of years. This is unsustainable and whilst we do have a plan to revitalise the museum and increase our revenue-generating activity, we need time to realise these plans and put in applications for all-important large grants. We asked for your help to raise £20,000 and thanks to your generosity we achieved this target in December.

We really are grateful that we can now open the museum for the 2017 season, but now we must start fundraising again for we need to secure a further £20,000 this year, and every year, to keep the museum open.

We have a number of ideas and fundraising events planned, so please keep an eye out for these. You can find out more about Supporting Us here.

Christmas Cards

Are you looking for a Christmas card with a difference this year? This year we’re delighted to launch our new Dr Jenner’s House cards, featuring an image of The Chantry by Emma Gower.

All proceeds from the sale of these cards support the work of The Jenner Trust (registered charity 1158316), enabling us to continue telling the remarkable story of Edward Jenner from his home in Berkeley.

The cards cost £4.50 for a pack of 10 (including envelopes) and can be purchased during working hours from the Museum Office in Berkeley. We can also dispatch the cards to anywhere in the UK (postage and packing costs £1.35), just click the link below to enter your payment details:

Buy Now With Credit Cards

Please note that orders must be received before 5pm on 16 December otherwise you may not get your cards before Christmas. Orders are dispatched by Second Class post so we cannot guarantee an arrival date.