Lutterworth Museum chief calls for support to keep it open

Stuart Hammond holds a list of fundraising events inside the Lutterworth Museum extension
Stuart Hammond holds a list of fundraising events inside the Lutterworth Museum extension

The new, improved museum in Lutterworth is starting its campaign to raise £14,000 to keep it open.

The museum’s spring Vintage and Craft Fair is taking place this Saturday at its base within the One Stop Shop in Gilmorton Road.

And museum chairman Stuart Hammond explained: “It costs £14,000 a year to run this museum, and it’s free to get in. The idea is to keep it free for as long as we can.

“So we rely on events all the year round to keep the museum going.”

About 500 people are expected through the day at the craft fair, which runs from 10am to 4pm and has 30 stalls.

If you haven’t been to the museum for a while, you will find it has got bigger.

“An area that was used for storage has gone, and that’s now a viewing area,” said Mr Hammond.

The craft fair starts off a string of coming events at the museum.

The weekend of April 11 and 12 will see the museum hosting a railway exhibition.

The Big Railway Weekend is open from 10am to 4pm each day, and features displays and exhibits and a model ride-on railway.

Entrance costs £2.50 with accompanied under-15s getting in for free and with free parking.

Mr Hammond said he was particularly excited by a display from the B17 Steam Locomotive Trust.

The trust is building a new steam locomotive from scratch.

It will be called The Spirit of Sandringham, and will be based on the Sandringham locos that once steamed into Lutterworth station on the old Great Central Railway line.

The station and the line closed down in 1969.

Then, on Sunday, April 26, it’s Classic Vintage Vehicle Day. The event will include model displays, and about 60 vintage vehicles on the museum grounds.

The popular annual Whittle Day is scheduled for Saturday, May 23.

The event is dedicated to the pioneering inventor of the jet engine Sir Frank Whittle, who was based in Lutterworth.

The day will include special Whittle tours costing £12.50 per head, during which guests can get rare access to Whittle’s work places.

There will also be special access to view some jets and engines at Bruntingthorpe.

There are further events throughout the year, up to a Christmas Craft Fair in November.

Mr Hammond said: “We hope local people will support their museum by going to these events, which generally cost just £2.50. We feel it’s important to preserve and celebrate the town’s history, but the museum just can’t continue without the money from paid-for events.”

Apart from the special events, the museum is normally open from Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10am until 3pm.