The purpose of the Badminton Museum of Ireland is to preserve the great heritage of Irish Badminton and to make the general badminton public aware of it.
As there is often misapprehension about the function of a Museum a few notes might help. At the heart of a Museum is the Archive, which is basically a store of valuable historical documents though it may also store artefacts. It is desirable that the Archive should, as far as possible, should be secure against fire, flooding, and vandalism. Nothing, of course, is fire-proof but expensive fire-retardant cabinets are available. Desirably, all historical documents are digitised and a copy stored off-site. An Archive will normally store such things as books, reports, and Minute books and have space for a researcher to work.
Once an Archive is in place it is possible to accept artefacts and many of these can be displayed in glass-fronted wall cabinets, and rotated to different locations.
Photographs provide a very valuable record and BMI has been fortunate in being given many photographs which are digitised and may be returned to donor. These provide the material which has been displayed on the website which is a modern facility for displaying the great diversity of the Irish badminton heritage. The source of all photos shown on the website is acknowledged.
Finally but importantly, the Museum must collect in its Archive current day material which, perhaps, in 25 years time may well be a historical item. A record of something apparently humdrum to-day, may be seen as a record of a seminal event from a historical viewpoint 25 years hence.
With the increasing use of Badminton mats the Historical Item gives some interesting background information about the origins of these courts. In deed for many years these courts were generally called Hova Courts.
The Gallery item displays an image of the Cup presented to R.H.Plews as runner-up in 1911 Irish Open Championships. The attached note gives a very interesting story in relation to the Cup and to the Plews family. We are indebted to Frank Peard for this display.
Reading the note above I would urge all lovers of the heritage of Badminton to safely retain all memorabilia and if so desired loan or donate to the Museum.