Explore the history of Bute Park at Cardiff Story Museum
A new exhibition exploring the history of Bute Park opens at the Cardiff Story Museum on December 2nd.

Called ‘The Stories They Would Tell’ the exhibition charts the history of the city centre park through the eyes of a sweet chestnut tree that called the park home for over a century until it was lost to a storm in January this year.

Museum Manager, Victoria Roger said:  “There can’t be many people in Cardiff who don’t have a story to tell about Bute Park, but imagine what a tree that has called it home for over a century could tell us, if it could talk.

“From the Fourth Marquess of Bute’s 21st birthday party to the 1978 National Eisteddfod and the more recent restoration project, this tree really has seen it all during its 132 years, and now we’re mapping those previously unheard stories against the rings in the cross-section of its trunk, which stands at the heart of the exhibition.”

Featured in the exhibition will be a new poem, written by Children’s Laureate for Wales Sophie McKeand.  The poem is based on the stories collected from park visitors during a series of workshops held in Bute Park while Sophie was artist in residence.

Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure, Cllr Peter Bradbury said:  “Bute Park is the green heart of Cardiff and has a special place in the hearts of many residents and visitors to the city.  Given the national significance of the park’s tree collection it is fitting that this exhibition turns the sad loss of one of its trees into a unique perspective on the park’s history.

“I’ve committed to do all I can to keep Cardiff’s park’s great in the face of budget cuts but exhibitions like this will help keep them protected long after my time, by helping visitors to the museum understand the important place they hold in our shared history.”

The free exhibition is part of a larger project supported by The Woodland Trust to listen closer to our trees and unlock the stories they would tell.  A new Tree Charter was launched on 6th November 2017 which aims to help guide UK society towards a future in which trees and people stand stronger together.

The Cardiff Story Museum is open daily from 10am – 4pm and the exhibition runs until 25th February 2018.

Image credit:  © Mount Stuart House Trust