Leicester’s New Walk Museum opens two new revamped Ancient Egyptian galleries

By Jake Olner

Leicester’s New Walk Museum opened its new Ancient Egypt exhibition this week following a massive revamp of the old gallery.

The new galleries, called ‘Life and Death in Ancient Egypt’, opened last weekend allowing the public to come and see displays of mummified bodies, hundreds of ancient trinkets and even the three Egyptian amulets which were excavated here in Leicester.

A keen museum-goer and follower of Egyptian history who had brought her children for a family day out was Sabiha Dawjee, 45, Evington, who said: “I read that there’s a new exhibit here and I’ve come before but then it was in the smaller room so I came today to see what’s new and what they have.

“This (mummified girl) is really interesting. I love watching the programs on Egypt and this is kind of nice to see in real life.”

MUMMIES: Ta-Bes was a teenage girl in the seventh century BC at the Ancient Egyptian city of Panopolis

The original gallery that opened in 1994 had become outdated with its low lighting and red walls that were never truly able to display the full extent of the museum’s collection of Egyptian artefacts.

The museum on Leicester’s New Walk has since enjoyed an investment of £200,000 which has allowed the creation of the two new galleries.

Deputy city mayor Cllr Piara Singh Clair said: “New Walk Museum is home to the most important collection of Egyptian artefacts in the whole of the East Midlands but, up until now, we’ve only been able to display around a third of the items in our collection.

“I hope that these new galleries will prove to be even more popular than our previous Egyptian gallery, and that they’ll give visitors opportunity to not only learn about the tombs and mummies of ancient Egypt, but also to understand more about the vibrant lives that these people led.”

The first of the two new galleries focuses on life in Ancient Egypt, documenting life from the earliest evidence of life all the way through to the Byzantine period in the first millennium AD.

The second focuses on death, detailing how bodies were mummified and even allowing the public to see the mummies and their tombs.

Entry to the museum and to the two new galleries is free and open seven days a week.

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