A GROUP of primary school children have provided their own replacements to precious medals belonging to the great composer Sir Edward Elgar which were stolen from a Worcestershire museum.
The children from Perrywood Primary School in Worcester were on a visit to Elgar’s Birthplace Museum at Broadheath when they heard burglars had broken in and stolen the medals from a glass case in one of the museum’s galleries.
The medals in question were his extremely rare insignia for the Order of Merit and that for the Knight’s Grand Cross of the Victorian Order.
“As soon as the children heard of the theft they set about designing their own versions of the medals,” said the Birthplace’s house steward Joe Tierney.
“They were so good, that we decided to put them on display in the glass case from where the originals were stolen, and they have become a popular feature for visitors.”
The break-in occurred last Autumn when thieves broke down the door of the museum and smashed the glass case in order to steal the medals. They also got away with a signed photograph of Elgar which had been hanging on a wall.
To date, despite a reward for information, their whereabouts have not come to light.
“While we are devastated that the originals were stolen, we are very pleased that we have these ‘replacements’ – which show how much our children care about such things,” Joe added.
Elgar’s Birthplace Museum, known as The Firs, showcases a comprehensive collection of original artefacts associated with our greatest composer. Since 2017 it has been in the care of the National Trust.
The Firs Elgar’s Birthplace is open on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday from 10am to 4pm until February 14 when it will be open seven days a week from 10am to 5pm until the Worcestershire October school holidays when it will once again be open from Friday to Mondays.
The Visitor Centre has a tea-room serving light lunches and hot drinks, concert space and exhibition spaces to enhance the experience of the Birthplace cottage and cottage garden. Surrounded by an orchard car parking and picnic area.
Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/the-firs or call Kirsty Bothma on 01905 333330 for more.