Cotswold District Council
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CDC gives substantial backing to ‘fantastic’ new Corinium Museum project
Cotswold District Council has given a massive vote of confidence to Cirencester’s award winning Corinium Museum by agreeing to allocate an extra £100,000 and approving recommended contractors for the new Stone Age to Corinium project.
Meeting on 15 November, the CDC Cabinet reviewed progress on the funding of the project and noted that the Heritage Lottery Fund had awarded a generous grant of almost £677,000 while the Museum’s Director and her team had successfully raised almost £539,000 worth of funding from other supporters. CDC had also previously set aside £50,000 from its Priorities Fund but increases in construction costs and building materials meant that an extra £100,000 would be required to ensure that several existing pledges were honoured and the chosen contractors could begin work on-site in January 2019.
The Museum, which is owned by CDC and operated by leisure management contractor SLM, plans to create new Stone Age, Bronze Age, Iron Age and Early Roman interactive galleries along with a new Discovery Centre and garden. Objects that are currently in storage will be conserved and put on display for the first time, including rare stone and bone tools, rock art, and beakers. This will help the museum to tell a new story about the pre-Roman occupation of the Cotswolds and support a wide range of activities, including the new prehistory educational curriculum.
CDC’s Cabinet Member for leisure, Cllr Stephen Hirst, comments,
“There is no doubt that the Corinium Museum is the jewel in the District’s crown and the staff and volunteers there are first class. It is has won many awards over the years and has achieved world renown because it holds such large and internationally significant collections which shed light on important archaeological achievements from ancient times onward.
“This fantastic new project will enable residents and visitors to view exhibits previously stored away, and see the work of conservators and other support staff at close quarters for the very first time. The new Discovery Centre will provide a dedicated space for a wide range of activities, including school workshops covering the new curriculum’s Stone Age, Bronze Age and Iron Age topics; archaeological workshops and practical demonstrations of ancient crafts; a research area for staff and volunteers working with museum objects; and a space for popular holiday activities.”
Amanda Hart, Museum Director, said,
“We have been planning this project for a long time and – thanks to the CDC decision on 15 November – we’re very excited that this is now set to become a reality when work begins on site early next year. This project will transform the front part of the Museum, creating a warm welcome for visitors and stunning new galleries which will highlight the star objects from the prehistoric Cotswolds. The Discovery Centre will be an inspirational learning space for a diverse range of activities to be enjoyed by all our visitors”.
Cotswold District Council
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