Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Straits Times : Heritage in highlight

The Straits Times
LifeStyle Section
6th February 2013

By Huang Lijie

A second community museum and blockbuster shows are some activities to look forward to

Following the opening of a community museum in Taman Jurong (below) last month, the Heritage Board will be opening another in Geylang Bahru later this year. Other heritage-related activities include a trail in Tiong Bahru, which kicks off in April. -- PHOTOS: SAM CHIN FOR THE STRAITS TIMES, ST FILE

New heritage walking trails, another community museum and the launch of blockbuster exhibitions on art and the nation.

These activities and openings are among highlights of a packed calendar of heritage events for the year, which was unveiled by the National Heritage Board yesterday at a press lunch.

The board manages six museums and two heritage institutions including the National Museum of Singapore and the Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall.

The board's director of marketing and corporate communications Cheryl Koh, 38, says the board celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and its focus will be heritage outreach and growing a sense of pride in heritage among Singaporeans.

"There has been an increase in heritage awareness and appreciation and we want to build on that wave," she says.

"We want to bring more of it to the public and show them different aspects of heritage, to make people aware that heritage is out there, that it is part of the community and neighbourhood as well."

One way the board hopes to achieve this is by encouraging heritage enthusiasts and interest groups to come up with projects that will fuel interest in heritage within the community.

To drive this movement and support such ground-up initiatives, it will introduce a new grant scheme later this year. Further details on this funding scheme will be announced then.

The board will also add three new heritage trails to its list of 10, beginning with one in Tiong Bahru in April, followed by trails in Toa Payoh and Tampines in the later half of the year.

The trails will highlight different aspects of the community's heritage through its architecture, eateries and the lifestyle of its residents past and present.

Information on the self-guided heritage trails is available on the board's website,

In the second quarter of this year, the trails will be available as applications for mobile phones.

A second community museum at the Kolam Ayer Community Club in Geylang Bahru will also open in the third quarter of this year. The first community museum opened last month in Taman Jurong.

The Kolam Ayer Community Museum will comprise a heritage corner and gallery at the community club and it will showcase the heritage and development of the area as well as memories of the residents and artefacts from the national collection.

The museums and heritage institutions will also host new exhibitions, including one titled Art And Nation: Formation Of A National Consciousness In Singapore Art at the National Museum of Singapore in October.