Question 1 – Analyse the evidence for the Royal Fort and its Park in the University guide leaflet.
I think that all guide leaflets should contain; when the building was built, why the building was built, a brief background of the history of the building, who it was built for, who built it, a map/plan of the building and grounds (if applicable), who the present owners are, families that have owned the building, unique features, significant furniture/pictures, gardens, servant quarters (if applicable) and how the building is used now.
Below is a pie chart of the proportions of the leaflet that are taken up by different topics. (All values are in % of the leaflet)
Almost 30% of this leaflet is taken up by descriptions of the furniture and paintings, which I think is excessive as just 10% is taken up by the interesting historical features of the Royal Fort. When people visit places such as the Royal Fort, they would usually prefer to read about the interesting historical features of the building rather than the furniture, paintings and plasterwork which takes up 40% of the leaflet.
The leaflet should contain more of the following; the purpose of the building, the present use of the building and any restoration that was taken place. Also the servants’ hall in the building should be mentioned along with a map/plan of the building and its grounds.
Question 2 – Compare the evidence gained on your fieldwork with the account in the leaflet
In this question I am going to compare the evidence gained on my fieldwork with the account on the Royal Fort guide leaflet. When I did my fieldwork, I found that there were a number of factors at the Royal Fort that were omitted from the guide leaflet. For example, much of the details of the plasterwork were omitted from the leaflet along with details of the rooms in the building and the history of some of the rooms. Comparing my fieldwork and the guide leaflet shows that the details of the rooms in the Royal Fort were not sufficient. There was not much missing from the leaflet, but some factors should have been explained in more detail, for example the details of the purpose of the building today was not explained in enough detail by any means.
Question 3 – Evaluate the written and picture sources that provide different interpretations of the Royal Fort and its Park
In this question I am going to analyse a variety of picture and written sources and suggest how they could make the interpretation of the leaflet different. In source 1, the picture shows the fort in 1762 painted by the famous artist at the time, Nicholas Pocock. In the picture you can see that the fort had lots of parkland and greenery. It is portrayed as a substantial home for the most upper class inhabitants of Bristol. Source 2 is a plan of “Bristol, Clifton and the Hotwells”. It shows Bristol in 1821. You can see how much of The area is taken up by the Royal Fort and its grounds compared to the rest of the city. It was the only Mansion house in the area. Source 3 is a family tree of the Descent of the Tyndalls.
The furthest the records go back is into the 1400s, where Tebeta Huchyns or Tyndale lived at Malksham Court in 1478. In source 4, you can see paintings if Thomas Tyndall, the builder of the Royal Fort, painted in 1762 and his eldest son, Thomas. Source 5 is a newspaper article about the last of the Tyndall family. It is an interview with Mrs. Mary Osmond, the cook to Miss Elizabeth Tyndall; the last descendent of the Tyndall family. Mrs. Osmond spoke very warmly about her former employer and described her as “a charming lady, so kind to everyone.” She then told the interviewer about her daily routine. This could make the interpretation of the leaflet different because it is first hand knowledge of one of the members of the Tyndall Family. Source 7 is a plan of the Royal Fort. It shows that the house contains luxurious rooms such as a library, a parlour, a housekeeper’s room and a Servants’ Hall.
This should be in every guide leaflet so the people going into the museum know what room they are in when they tour the building without the need of a guide. Source 6 is an interview with Peter Walwyn, a famous racehorse trainer. He talked about his grandfather, who married Laura Tyndall at the Royal Fort in 1872. Peter did not know his grandfather, but he probably would have seen pictures and letters etc. about his grandfather’s marriage to Laura Tyndall to be able to know about the Tyndall family. This would make the leaflet more interesting and having quotes from the interview would make the interpretation different.
Source 8 is Humphrey Repton’s plan to landscape the Royal Fort in 1805. Humphrey Repton was a very famous landscape gardener at the time and was very reputable. This shows again that the Tyndall family was very wealthy and cared about what people thought of them. They would have showed their guests this drawing at dinner parties to impress them. Source 9 shows that The Royal Fort was important in the slave trade as Thomas Tyndall’s Family were involved. The slave trade is not mentioned in the leaflet and as there has been much talk about it at present, it would interest today’s reader of the guide more. Source 10 is evidence for the Tyndalls as slave traders. This would make the reader of the leaflet more informed of how the Tyndalls were as people and what they did for money.
On the whole the added information of these sources would make the leaflet much more informative and interesting. It would give the reader much more of an interest in the building than the present leaflet would.
Question 4 – Write three detailed and illustrated paragraphs about the Royal Fort and its Park based on the new sources. Write a short, general conclusion indicating what this investigation has taught you about different interpretations.
In this question I am going to write three detailed and illustrated paragraphs about the Royal Fort and its Park based on the 10 new sources. I will show how the new information from these sources can improve the interpretation of the guide leaflet. For example, a description of source one would show the reader how wealthy the Tyndall family must have been in the 17-1800s as they employed a very famous artist to sketch the Royal Fort and its park, probably to show off to their friends. It would also show the reader that the Tyndall family owned some fantastic parkland along with a substantial house. This sketch should have been put in the guide leaflet so the reader would see what the Royal Fort and parkland looked like in 1762.
I think that source seven should have definitely been included in the leaflet as it is a plan of the inside of the building. All tourists without a guide person should know where they are in the building so they can think what the room would have been like in the time of the occupancy of the Tyndall’s. For example; if the reader of the guide was in the dining room, with a plan of the house they would know where they are and with additional information in the leaflet, they would know some details about the room and its history. I think that not including a plan of the building was a huge mistake to make as it would give the person looking around the building more knowledge of where they are.
Some of source ten should have been included in the leaflet because it is evidence for the Tyndalls as slave traders. Although it could be seen as a negative aspect of the Tyndall family, it would interest today’s reader as last year there was lots of talk about the slave trade as it was the 200th anniversary of its abolishment.