'Impossible to replace': Curator of Horsham Museum and Art Gallery to retire after 32 years

Jeremy Knight is to retire at the end of September after 32 years at Horsham Museum and Art Gallery.

Jeremy’s departure comes after a significant amount of work in the last 18 months leading the extensive refresh and refurbishment of the Museum’s galleries and displays during the lockdown.

The Museum and Art Gallery will reopen to the public at the end of September 2021.

Horsham District Council said it has been extremely fortunate to benefit from Jeremy’s extensive knowledge and incredible service over the years.

Jeremy Knight is retiring from Horsham Museum and Art Gallery

A council spokesman said: "He has built many strong relationships with key regional and national institutions which has enabled the Museum to regularly punch above its weight, hosting nationally important exhibitions and displays.

"Jeremy’s exceptional ongoing commitment and dedication has created a very special legacy. He has ensured that the local community has a truly wonderful unique resource, creating a very special place in the heart of Horsham.

"Jeremy will be greatly missed and impossible to replace, his impact in both protecting and promoting the District’s rich heritage is immeasurable."

Commenting on just some of his achievements over his time at the Museum, Jeremy said: “I have particularly enjoyed creating diverse, engaging exhibitions; over 600 since I started at the Museum, which have illustrated the richness of the District’s heritage and culture.

“However exhibitions are fleeting, and of greater importance is the creation of collections that future generations can use to explore the District’s past: from the Shelley Collection and the watercolour collection, through to the acquisition of oral histories of those who served or survived World War II and works of contemporary artists.

“I have particularly enjoyed reconnecting Horsham to its past and its heritage, illustrating what I have personally found fascinating to the wider public.

“Above all I have enjoyed working with a great bunch of volunteers and staff, transforming the Museum and the District’s feeling about its past – through the museum, heritage trails, heritage plaques, publications, press and media articles, even Horsham gingerbread, and rescuing objects and documents, books and pictures that are the foundation of future developments. “

Commenting on the exceptional tenure of Jeremy, Horsham District Council Cabinet Member for Leisure and Culture councillor Roger Noel said: “I was shocked and saddened to hear that Jeremy has offered his resignation to the Council to enable his retirement.

“To say that he will be missed in his role as Curator is a massive understatement. He has single-handedly shaped Horsham Museum and Art Gallery into the exemplary facility that we have today, and this legacy will stretch far into the future.”

A special celebration of thanks will be held for Jeremy alongside the reopening of the Museum.