All aboard for a trip back in time – Black Country Museum Instameet

At the end of March, we were fortunate enough to be part of our very first Instameet, ran by Iger’s Birmingham and Igers Black Country (who both are part of the Instagrammers Movement) at the Black Country Living Museum, Dudley.

The day, as the names up top probably suggest, revolved around the social media platform ‘Instagram’. Within Instagram, there are various communities around the world as part of the Instagramers Movement, affectionately known as IGers. The movement was founded by Phil Gonsalez in Madrid and as started to help photographers over the world improve their pictures and skills and ended up developing into the communities that are now present on Instagram. There are now IGer accounts in over 60 counties with over 500 cities around the world having their own Iger communities, which are both Online and Offline – many of which hosting Instameets.

What is an Instameet we hear you ask? They’re meetups and events organised by various Instagrammers communities where like-minded people can take part, take pictures and generally have fun and hang out together. All that’s asked of you is to post a few pictures of the day to your Instagram account to share the day with the rest of the Instagrammers community.


A warm welcome at the Black Country Living Museum


Our Instameet was co-hosted by the Birmingham and Black Country Instagrammer Communities as part of Visit England’s ‘Tourism Week’ for 2018. Visit England, the official tourist board for England, aims to promote the fantastic tourist attractions that England has and uses various different means to do so, such as the Tourism Week. As one of the ways to promote and celebrate the vast array of attractions across England during Tourism Week, Visit England helped to arrange and fund quite a few Instameets up and down the Uk – for pictures from these up and down the UK check out #ETW2018 on Instagram for tons of the pictures taken at the various events.

The Black Country Living Museum was the home to our Instameet for the day. Based in Dudley, England, the Black Country Living Museum (BCLM for short) is one of the Uk’s largest open-air museums and is set over 26 acres of land. The museum was officially opened in 1978 and is based on the Victorian era and the early 1900’s. It lets you become immersed in the fun and games of the period – there are games to play, things being made and loads of stories from volunteers in the period dress about the eras they portray. The museum is incredibly popular, both with locals and with those from further afield, making it the Uk’s third most visited open-air museum.

We arrived at the museum bright and early to meet up with all the other’s waiting to attend the event and were met with warm smiles and friendly chat. To start the day, we were guided into a conference room and given an introductory speech detailing the museum by a very happy member of the BCLM staff, who taught us all a bit of black country talk that might come in handy such as ‘Oss’ (a Horse) and ‘bostin’ (very good) and generally got us all in the mood for the museum itself.


Taxi! @The Black Country Living Museum


From here we were free to roam, and roam we did. The museum is huge, so we spent the majority of our morning nosing in some of the period houses, 1930’s shops (one of which is a Chip Shop which sells the best Fish & Chips in the area – although we didn’t get chance to sample them this visit due to very long lines!) and even a Victorian schoolhouse. We also stopped to admire plenty of vintage buses that could be seen driving up and down the roads transporting visitors from the museum entrance to the main street.


Next stop the School House at the Black Country Living Museum


For part of the meetup, we were all invited down to the museum Pub ‘Bottle and Glass Inn’ for a drink (thanks to Visit England for this!) and a natter with all of the other’s attending the event. This was a lot of fun to put faces to names from Instagrammers we already followed, along with meeting some more,  to discuss pictures, Instagram and life in general.


The Bottle and Glass at the Black Country Living Museum


After this, we carried on exploring, more specifically the main street. Here there are lots of buildings posing as old shops – including a chemist and a D.I.Y store. There was a lovely lady inside the Chemist who chatted with us about how they used to sell medicines and how in the past they weighed babies in the shops. There’s also a couple of shops that you can buy things from today; a Bakery and a Sweet shop! We sampled some of these treats – the Eccles cakes were to die for and the sweet shop sells all the traditional boiled sweets (who can resist a good old Rhubarb and Custard?!?)


Weighing the baby at the Black Country Living Museum


From here we spent some time at the Fairground, complete with helter-skelter, swings, hook a duck and other fairground classics. These certainly made for interesting pictures from various different places in the museum, not just up close.


Hook-A-Duck at the Fairground in the Black Country Living Museum


We then ambled back towards the museum entrance, our day almost at a close. We did, however, manage to squeeze a round trip on one of the old double-decker buses which made for some interesting snaps.


Mirror inside an old Double-Decker bus at the Black Country Living Museum


All in all, we had a brilliant day out and we’d certainly recommend the Black Country Living Museum to anyone who happens to be in the area – with or without little ones to take along too.

Thanks to everyone involved in organising the event and making the day possible.

Here are some of our favourite pictures we took during the day:

Hannah’s Favourites


Desk with an old typewriter, found in the Radio shop at the Black Country Living Museum



The main street at the Black Country Living Museum, aged artificially during edits



Colourful sweet shop window at the Black Country Living Museum


Liam’s Favourites


Helter Skelter at the Black Country Living Museum
Looking over the Funfair
“Tickets Please” at the Black Country Living Museum


Websites & Social Media

Instagrammers movement:


Instagrammers Birmingham:


Instagrammers Black Country:


Visit England/English Tourism Week:


Black Country Living Museum:


For more pictures from this specific meet, check out the following on Instagram:

#igb_meet_BCLM or head to our Instagram page (@handlpresent) and follow any of the # from the day.


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