World Footwear


Northampton Museum shoe collection available online

Mar 13, 2014 United Kingdom
Northampton Museum shoe collection available online
One of the largest shoe collections in the world is going to be digitized and made available online for public viewing.
The project is part of a wider initiative developed by the Northampton Borough Councils museum to raise awareness of its shoe collection and to make it accessible to a greater audience. This investment in digital technology will make it easier for people interested in shoe design to access the collection, allowing international audiences to explore the shoe making legacy and offering a rich source of inspiration to footwear and fashion designers, academic institutions, researchers, media, other museums and galleries, shoe lovers and any other public that might want to use the museum’ ion of footwear as a resource.

This will be possible thanks to a successful biding action to the Arts Council England fund that granted the Northampton Museum and Art Gallery £69.900. Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in arts and culture, from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Between 2011 and 2015, they estimate a total investment across the country of £1.4 billion of public money from government and an estimated £1 billion from the National Lottery. Peter Knott, Arts Council Area Director, said: “Designated collections show the richness and variety of our country’s heritage. In the Midlands, the projects we are investing in will improve the visitor experience and give people the opportunity to have a deeper understanding of their local collections, whilst also attracting wider audiences.”

The Northampton Museum and Art Gallery cares one of the largest collection of objects, helping to understand the history of shoes in the world. The importance of this footwear compilation reaches international impact, consisting of 12.000 shoes dating back from 1.000 BC to present day, and including documentary footage and fine art, as well as thousands of military items, geological specimens and also 5.000 items of leather. The ground floor of the Museum is dedicated to the display of footwear from ancient Egypt through to the present and there is a Shoe Lounge, showcasing current designers and manufacturers.

All of the shoes in the collection will be photographed and displayed online alongside a description for each piece. The virtual collection is expected to be online by April 2016.

For more information about the museum and its exhibitions and activities please visit the website:

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