The Second World War changed the priorities of many museums across the UK. Wartime austerity meant that museums found it difficult to look after their collections. Many museums began to focus on their local communities and decided to specialise in local history and fine arts.
Norwich Castle Museum took this same decision in 1956 when it began to sell large parts of its collection of ‘foreign’ antiquities and ethnography to World Museum. World Museum was able to buy this huge collection, containing thousands of objects, because it had received War Damage Funds after the Blitz.
The Norwich collection contained objects from across the world and through time. This Ancient Egyptian shabti was just one of the many objects from Norwich that replaced the collections lost in the fire.