Image of Lincoln Cathedral

Delve into the Great Exhibition

A unique exhibition is taking place in Lincoln this summer and one of the organising team, Dr Marianne Wilson, has told us a bit more about it.

"I have been fortunate enough to be part of the team involved in organising Lincolnshire’s Great Exhibition. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a collection of rare and unusual items, with Lincolnshire connections, across four different venues across Lincoln: The Collection, The Usher Gallery, Lincoln Cathedral’s Wren and Medieval Libraries and Lincoln Castle.

"Magna Carta's 800th anniversary year was the catalyst to Lincolnshire's Great Exhibition; Lincoln is home to one of the country's four surviving copies of the 1215 Magna Carta. Magna Carta is a document of crucial importance. It has been called upon numerous times in our own history, for example, by parliamentary opposition to King Charles I, by the founding fathers of the United States of America, and it still features in political debates today.

"This exhibition is the only place in the world where you can see a 1215 Magna Carta, alongside a 1217 Charter of the Forest and a definitive edition of the 1225 Magna Carta from the National Archives.

"Several themes have been addressed throughout the exhibition and these range in time from the medieval period, when the county had a significant role in both the ecclesiastical and political history of Britain, to the modern era, in which Lincolnshire figures have played a part on the national and international stage.

"You might be surprised to discover the number of significant people who were born in the county, well-known figures such as Isaac Newton and Margaret Thatcher but also other historically important characters. There are many hidden stories behind the exhibits, such as that of Sir Geoffrey Luttrell, who commissioned the magnificent illuminated manuscript known as the Luttrell Psalter, and Sir Thomas Heneage, who was given the exquisite Heneage jewel by Elizabeth I, for his service against the Armada.   

"In addition to this, we extended our remit to include in the exhibition individuals who were not actually born in Lincolnshire, but who became closely associated with the county.

"Chief among these was George Stubbs, most famous for his paintings of horses, whose celebrated sketches of The Anatomy of the Horse were created at Horkstow, in North Lincolnshire. We also celebrate the work of Peter DeWint, a master of watercolour, who so eloquently shows us the diversity of landscape that the county has to offer.

"The treasures of Lincolnshire bring together a variety of people and objects that span a wide chronological and geographical area. The key message to take away from this exhibition is that Lincolnshire has a lot to celebrate - some of our nation’s greatest minds, bravest heroes and most powerful influences."

Marianne, among other things, works for Hidden Lincoln - a new bespoke tour company which has recently launched a series of personalised historical tours of Lincoln and the surrounding area. One of these includes a Lincolnshire Treasures Tour, which will help you to uncover the secrets behind Lincolnshire's Great Exhibition.

Lincoln: home to 1215 Magna Carta

Celebrating more than 800 years of Magna Carta


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