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Just shire of a complete collection

Kathy Drysdale in her one room LOTR fan museum. PHOTOS/SUE TEODORO

A passionate Lord of the Rings [LOTR] fan is bringing her extensive memorabilia and knowledge of the book and its characters to Featherston.

Kathy Drysdale has lived and breathed the Lord of the Rings since reading the trilogy as a teenager. She and her best friend would dress up and discuss LOTR characters and stories, so when the movie was made in Wellington it was literally a dream come true.

Now Drysdale shares her passion for the book and it’s tale of the triumph of good over evil in her own home.

The One Room Fan Museum in Drysdale’s central Wellington house is choc-full of her collection of LOTR treasures.

Arwen rescues Frodo from a Ring Wraith at the LOTR fan museum.

The front room of the cosy family cottage is where the magic happens. Black capes and swashbuckling replica swords are side-by-side with Gollum and other masks. A suit of armour is in pride of place, right next to mini-me armour for kiddies to try on. Replicas of Ring Wraiths, Frodo, and the cast are set up on the ornamental fireplace.

Drysdale even has her own LOTR movie, where people can watch her and her families’ journey through the book to the premiere in central Wellington.

People are encouraged to dress up and live the parts.

“There’s something here that’s quite special and fun,” Drysdale said.

“I loved the book. It was hugely impactful. I would have been in my early teens when I read it.

“It’s also tied up with the fact my best friend also loved the book,” she said.

The pair would re-enact scenes from the stories.

“The two of us were kindred spirits.”

Drysdale described how she had initially been horrified Peter Jackson was making the movies.

Gollum at the LOTR fan museum.

“I thought it would ruin a book I loved. But when I went along I was blown away. It was amazing. It was an incredible movie and it really captured for me the spirit of the books,” she said.

Most of Drysdale’s family had been involved in some form with her LOTR journey.

“They come along with me,” she said.

She has close family in Featherston, where she will be bringing her installation and knowledge as part of June’s Booktown Festival.

Hundreds have been through the one-room museum since it opened in late 2017, despite the impact of covid.

“It was only really open part-time.”

She had started collecting the memorabilia at an early stage as a hobby, and the museum started from there.

The museum will be partially relocating to Featherston in early June, together with the movie of Drysdale’s LOTR journey and a range of up to 50 costumes.

“The costumes are such fun. People love the costumes, and fans feel like they can actually live the experience. Once people start getting into the costumes, they are having an absolute ball,” she said.

Drysdale and her LOTR experience will be in Featherston’s Anzac Hall over the weekend of June 11 and 12.

She will also be running a LOTR themed quiz on Saturday, June 11, at Featherston School hall. Full details will be announced with the Featherston Booktown Karukatea Festival programme reveal at the end of April.

  • More information about the museum is at www.theoneroomfanmuseum.nz/

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