Weston-super-Mare museum revamp lands £70,000 from Heritage Lottery Fund
Volunteers behind a project to refurbish Weston-super-Mare’s museum have received a lottery cash windfall of more than £70,000.
Weston Town Council, which took over the Burlington Street museum from North Somerset Council in 2011, submitted a bid for £750,000 to Heritage Lottery Fund for a major overhaul of the building.
Its first stage bid has been successful, securing a grant of £73,000 which will be used to help it prepare the next phase of the funding application.
Work will now start on drawing up a stage two application for the cash which will see detailed plans drawn up for refurbishing and improving the building.
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It is expected that the detailed planning stage will take around 12 months to complete with a final bid for the cash being submitted next autumn.
If funding is agreed, work could start on site early in 2014.
Museum working party chairman, Councillor John Crockford-Hawley, said: “This is a tremendous vote of confidence in what we are trying to achieve in Burlington Street.
“All the past year’s hard work has borne fruit.”
The plans include removing asbestos in the building and putting in new electrics.
There are also plans to install a lift to the first floor as well as reconfiguring the gallery spaces.
The current exhibition spaces and art gallery will also be refurbished with new lighting and the cabinets which feature an array of exhibits and artefacts will be updated.
The ground floor display area made into a secure exhibition space to attract collections from other museums.
Mr Crockford-Hawley added: “A revamped museum will not only help improve the town and surrounding villages’ sense of identity by encouraging curiosity and pride in our local heritage but will hopefully also become a tourist destination in its own right.”