Police Museum

Today for something different, we took the kids to the New Zealand Police Museum.  We thought it would be interesting – which it was – and less crowded than some of the bigger museums in our region – it wasn’t.  It was packed.  There was a school holiday programme running where children could “learn to be a scene-of-crime officer” (ie dust for fingerprints), and another school holiday programme had chosen to visit the museum, as well as several families like ours.

Pearl picked up a workbook, which had several challenges in it, and went to work.  She had a great time solving crimes, following trails, collecting clues, and hunting down particular museum items.

Fainjin loved the displays of guns, motorbikes (including one he could sit on), the crashed car, and the identikit computer game.  He tried on a few police hats, but none of our kids wanted to try on any of the uniforms.

Babess found the museum a bit overwhelming, but she liked Rhys the police dog, and appreciated the toybox and playmat in a quieter corner.

There are some very interesting exhibits, including guns from David Gray‘s collection, the outboard motor from the Zodiac dinghy used in the Rainbow Warrior bombing, cutlery from the Erebus flight, a display on the 1981 Springbok tour, and a bible belonging to one of the victims of the 2011 Christchurch earthquake.  There were displays of older things, too, but I was struck by how much of the history displayed was within my own memory.  I also liked the story from one of the early women traffic cops of how they were given uniform handbags and shown how to use them to fend off attackers – and pointed out to their instructors that they wouldn’t be carrying handbags when they rode their motorbikes!

The kids had been reluctant to go to the museum at first, but once inside they were captivated and we spent much longer there than we had expected.  Family outing – success!

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

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