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Bletchley Park's Bitter Dispute Over Its Future 99

An anonymous reader writes "Tensions are high at Bletchley Park between the new management who want a 21st century installment and the volunteers who want to show the whole story (and get dismissed for doing so). This report [Note: video, with sound] is from the BBC: 'The groundbreaking intelligence work carried out at Bletchley Park during the second world war was credited with bringing forward the end of the conflict. In 2011 the site was awarded a £4.6m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). But Bletchley is currently in the throes of a bitter dispute, between owners who want to create a brand new visitors centre, and volunteers who have been working on the site for years.'"
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Bletchley Park's Bitter Dispute Over Its Future

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  • by jimmydevice ( 699057 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @10:36AM (#46072527)

    Another example of the fucking suits disneyfying and monetizing a thing that is perfect as is.

    fuck fuck fuck!

  • by jcrb ( 187104 ) <> on Sunday January 26, 2014 @10:50AM (#46072627) Homepage

    One of my most favorite museums in the world used to be the Science Museum in London, then I visited it and discovered the steam engine in the entrance doesn't run, the ship model gallery has been sent to storage never to be seen again to be replaced with a gift shop, I couldn't find the working Babbage engine section, in fact basically every display I wanted to see was gone and replaced by junk.

    These so called "modernized" displays are nothing better than what you could read online, I want to go to a museum to see *actual* history, not to see a cartoon representation of a simplified version of history that assumes I am a moron.

    I think the curators of science/technology museums need to view themselves in the same way as curators of art museums do, their purpose is to display the "art" not to tell me about the art with pretty cartoons after they ship the art to the storage warehouse.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 26, 2014 @11:33AM (#46072913)

    I think it's akin to the aim of making sure every child wins at school. The aim is noble - that nobody is made to feel bad about themselves - but misses the point of struggle and achievement. You can't have a sense of achievement if there's no struggle. You can't win, if you can't lose.

    Here the same thing happens - the exhibit must be accessible to all. Everyone can understand it, and there's no struggle, no stretching of the imagination, and thus no inspiration from it. That's the real shame of these changes, things that would have made a child want to be an engineer, or scientist, or mathematician are replaced with things they can understand and get bored with - all in one afternoon.

    Oh and it has to be shiny and clean and modern looking too. That's what people want you see.
    They don't really want that - they want something interesting and inspirational, but if you can't have that, a touch screen information system, and shiny white floors are the next best thing...

  • by hughbar ( 579555 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @12:45PM (#46073359) Homepage
    So agree. Used to take my son there in the late 1980s, when everything was pretty similar to my childhood. Basically, wonderfully engineered things with handles and buttons. I went recently with my nephews and much of this is gone, gradually replaced by superficial, patronising displays.
  • by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @02:18PM (#46074081)

    Nonsense. You cannot run museums in a way that is profitable. Capitalism cannot fix everything, but can destroy a lot if misapplied.

  • by expatriot ( 903070 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @03:14PM (#46074435)

    I went there with two other nerds and we spend hours looking at the engines, parts, huts, and the computer museum also on the site. I liked the simple nature of the displays (technically complex of course, but simply presented). Something had to be done for the huts of course because wood.

    I went again with my wife later (English teacher) and she was very impatient. "Why are you spending 15 minutes looking at a electronic part?" (custom rotor for the bombe.

    You have to have the place be self sustaining and provide something for everyone.

    Tricky balance.

The best defense against logic is ignorance.