Christchurch Mansion in Ipswich is among the winners at the Suffolk Museum of the Year Awards

Suffolk Museum of the Year Awards. Winners of the Museum Object of the Year Award, Christchurch Mans

Suffolk Museum of the Year Awards. Winners of the Museum Object of the Year Award, Christchurch Mansion. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Christchurch Mansion was among the winners at a University Campus Suffolk-hosted prize-giving ceremony for the best museums in the county.

The Ipswich-based attraction won the Object of the Year category for its oil painting The Felixstowe to Ipswich Coach by Russell Sidney Reeve in the Suffolk Museum of the Year Awards.

Every museum entering the category had put submitted an artefact to the Association of Suffolk Museums website for the public to vote on.

Taking the overall title of Suffolk Museum of the Year was the Mid-Suffolk Light Railway.

The Wetheringsett-based attraction scooped the top gong after months of voting and judging, which came to a climax tonight.

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The MSLR beat off competition from seven other shortlisted museums to claim the title in the awards’ third year.

John Reeve, marketing manager for the railway, said: “It’s amazing to win this award, and a testament to the hard work of our volunteers.

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“Being named Suffolk Museum of the Year will help to raise our profile further and let more people know we are out here offering a unique experience in the county.

“The one thing we hope it will be able to do is assist us in the future with further developments at the museum.”

Meanwhile The Suffolk Regiment Museum in Bury St Edmunds was announced as winner of the Special Award for Individuality, Innovation and Service while Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury was presented with the Award for Community and Education Engagement.

The other museums on the shortlist were:

n Beccles and District Museum

n Halesworth Museum

n Lowestoft Maritime Museum

n Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum, Flixton

The public was able to vote on the competition’s long list from June until the end of August using voting slips available at each competing museum and published in the Ipswich Star’s sister newspaper the East Anglian Daily Times.

The top eight museums were then visited by a panel of judges from the paper, the Association of Suffolk Museums and BBC Radio Suffolk.

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