LYMM Heritage Group is looking forward to an exciting year after submitting a lottery bid to establish a core exhibition at the new heritage centre which is taking shape in the village.
The Group submitted a bid to the Heritage Lottery fund at the end of January which if successful will not only help establish a core exhibition in the new centre on Legh St but would also equip it is as a base for learning, research and archive building.
The centre would tell the story of the village’s rich heritage particularly through the periods of the transport and industrial revolution based on the themes of Trades, Transport and Tradition.
The group’s chair, Alan Williams said:“ We have learnt a lot over the two years since our formation and put in an enormous amount of work to understand what makes a successful centre. We have talked to potential local users and key contributors like the local History Society, schools and clubs as well as visiting many other centres and listening to industry experts.”
The outcome of all the research is a project with three areas . There will be a core exhibition , telling the story of Lymm’s history through storyboards, artefacts, images, video and models. A second important area will be a set of learning resources and activities that will help local schools introduce children to a better of understanding and appreciation of the history of the area where they live. Finally the group aim to launch a digitisation project that will ensure that as much as possible that is still available today, like documents, photographs and film is carefully scanned, categorised and stored to ensure it is still there for future generations”
Ray Banton who is the group’s secretary explained: “We are aiming to create a space that has an interesting and engaging main exhibition but also to be able to adapt that space to welcome in groups for talks and school classes as well as having a series of smaller temporary exhibitions perhaps mounted by schools.”
Volunteer Recruitment is the responsibility of Trish Cockayne and Scott Smith. Scott, who is still in his twenties has only lived in the village a couple of years but soon became fascinated by its history. He said: “I am really enjoying being part of such a dynamic team and I am picking up more knowledge of Lymm history as I go along. The response from people on social media and through our volunteer campaigns has been terrific. We have over 1,700 people following us on facebook from all over the world, many of whom grew up in Lymm and moved away. It really feels like we are building a worldwide community.”
People using the village have already commented of how much the appearance of the building is being improved and the final step will be replacement of the front of the building, the former Royal British Legion in Legh St, with a striking modern look, mainly glass, that will offer a welcoming façade for visitors to the village. All the building work is being funded by its owner Howard Platt before handing it over to the centre on very generous lease terms. “I think we, and the whole village owe Howard a huge debt of thanks for his vision and generosity in making the building available to us. “ added Alan Williams.
“We also appreciate other local groups and organisations that have given us financial support including the Parish Council, Round Table and Freemasons. Once we are absolutely certain we can go ahead we will also be launching a friends and supporters scheme.”
Alan concluded: “In a year which has given Lymm a number of challenges: threat of Library closure, loss of the village post office and loss of free parking it is heartening to see the prospect of such a positive new addition to the Lymm village scene on the horizon. Now its fingers crossed while the Heritage lottery bid is considered. If all goes to plan the centre will be open to the public in the second half of the year.