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Museum celebrates - and future is bright

PUBLISHED: 21:32 19 December 2008 | UPDATED: 22:04 05 July 2010

THE Lowestoft and East Suffolk Maritime Museum looks set for a glittering future as the society celebrated its 50th anniversary this week.

Based in the Sparrow's Nest Park, Britain's most easterly museum is looking forward to the conclusion of a major renovation which will almost double the size of the maritime treasure trove.

THE Lowestoft and East Suffolk Maritime Museum looks set for a glittering future as the society celebrated its 50th anniversary this week.

Based in the Sparrow's Nest Park, Britain's most easterly museum is looking forward to the conclusion of a major renovation which will almost double the size of the maritime treasure trove.

In 2007, the museum, which is accredited by the National Museums Service, received a grant of nearly £350,000 from the Heritage Lottery fund, which is currently being used to expand the learning facilities and build an educational room in a modern extension to the picturesque museum. The building work, which started in July last year, is well under way and looks set to be completed in spring 2009.

Colin Dixon, vice-chairman for the museum, said: “The Lowestoft Maritime Museum is run and managed by a dedicated team of volunteers who have put in a lot of time and hard work to get the facility to the standard it is today. To

double the size of the museum is an amazing achievement for a society which was founded 50 years ago by

a small number of enthusiasts.

“The expansion project will put Lowestoft on the map by highlighting the stories of the fishing industry which created the town.”

The new educational room will draw on the rich collections of ship models, fishing and ship artefacts, paintings, photographs and related information. As the maritime industries of Lowestoft decline, contributions have increased and the project will help to improve the care of the collections.

The extra space will allow them to be monitored more effectively and by regrouping and redisplaying the collections, the stories connected to them will be opened up to potential researchers, young people and schools.“We very much hope the new resources will inspire more visitors to use the collections, explore the museum and become regular visitors,” Mr Dixon added. “Flexible learning space will be available, encouraging a wide range of groups to delve into the collections through a dedicated education room.”

The museum, which is a registered charity, is open seven days a week from Easter to the end of October.

To celebrate the society's golden jubilee, 200 unique limited edition barrel mugs, which cost £10

each, have been commissioned from Great Yarmouth Potteries. To buy a mug contact the museum on 01502 511260.

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