Laura with Royal Marines about to leave the Keep on a charity cycle ride

The Keep Military Museum in Dorchester has recently appointed a new curator.
 Laura Jayne Gardner joined the Keep a year ago as deputy curator, and since the departure of Chris Copson to the Haynes Motor Museum she has been appointed to the top job. Laura said: “This is a very exciting opportunity for me to work in such a highly regarded regimental museum and to help develop it for the 21st century. I’m fascinated by our military heritage – especially the early years of our regiments – and by the social aspects of army life, including veterans.” Born and bred in Dorset, Laura developed a passion for heritage and decided to change careers from working in psychology in the Prison Service. She began as a volunteer at Weymouth Museum, where she is now a trustee, and is currently completing an MA in Heritage with the University of Leicester. As deputy curator she played a leading role in creating the Keep’s stunning new Second World War Gallery, which opened in May. When not at work, Laura is a keen sportswoman and can be found in the sea, on a netball court or at a pub quiz. Chairman of the Keep Museum Trustees, Brigadier Richard Toomey, said: “Laura will play a leading part in helping us to achieve our ambitions for the future.” Asked about plans for the museum, she said: “Our ambition is to open the museum to the wider community in Dorchester and beyond. Ours is an exciting and proud story and I look forward to helping to tell it.”

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