I agree that anyone visiting who has been involved in the quilting world for a while, mightn't be bowled over by the permanent collection of quilts on view in the main building. But it is a varied one and a good introduction to the craft. Its great advantage is that it is permanent and the way the quilts are displayed means that they can be examined at close quarters. I only wish other museums would take note.
The annual quilt exhibitions which I referred to were held in the Exhibition Gallery next to the main building. In the past there were some great shows, Kaffe Fassett one year and the last and best in my opinion, was in 2004 when Jen Jones brought quilts from her collection which were hung alongside comparable American quilts (see poster above which I can't resist showing). That event was the last for a while as a new Director had been appointed who thought that exhibitions other than quilts should be featured. Well it is a point of view!
I did visit the following year and walking into the Exhibition Gallery was a strange experience as it was filled, I think with maps, or it might have been posters, obviously it didn't make much of an impression on me! The gallery was deserted and the ladies in its shop, which was brimming with quilt books and other quilt related items, were looking rather superfluous and said that they were missing the coaches full of quilters who usually filled the gallery with their enthusiasm and buying power.
As I said I didn't get a reply to my letter about the dropping of the quilt shows, but I am sure that stronger influences than mine have done their best. Perhaps with some success, because last year the Museum did mount a Quilt Exhibition and published a new book on their quilts (see above). I think this was done attract visitors who would be going to the V&A Quilt Exhibition, though I was rather disappointed with it as some of my favourite quilts featured in the book were not on show.
Who knows they may have a change of policy yet? Not this year, however, because that is to be on Marilyn Monroe!