Volunteer plan for Helston Museum's future

Volunteer plan for Helston Museum's future

Volunteer plan for Helston Museum's future

First published in Helston

The future of Helston Museum could be looking bright, if an enthusiastic group of volunteers are given permission to take over the running of it.

The South Kerrier Heritage Trust (SKHT) hopes to put in a bid to Cornwall Council, in the belief that they can make the museum thrive.

The charitable trust was formed in response to an advert calling for interested parties to take on the running, and was the only organisation that showed any interest.

Members are now in the process of putting together a formal application for control, with the hope that a decision will be made by this April.

David Turnbull, secretary of the trust, said: “There are a huge number of things we could do. One is, it’s got to increase its attraction to visitors through the normal PR things – more signage, website etc – to get people in to the museum.

“It’s got to be open longer for more hours and it needs to have constant refreshing, so there’s always something new to see.”

In the past the new owners of the Passmore Edwards Institute in Penrose Rose has spoken of their interest in creating a “cultural quarter” with the museum and the heritage trust is also keen for this to happen.

Mr Turnbull mentioned the possibility of creating a physical link between the neighbouring sites in the future, perhaps through a bridge and some steps, so people were encouraged to visit both.

Judith Haycock, trust chairman, said: “It’s a really exciting opportunity and over the past few years people have realised Cornwall Council isn’t the best person to be managing the museum. There are so many opportunities there that it would be marvellous to explore these.

“It’s exciting for the town because it’s such a focal point.”

She added that the group had “so many big ideas,” which also included making public huge amounts of old photographs that are currently shut away and in need of sorted.

Similarly, for anyone interested in mining history there was a “wealth of history.”

As previously reported, budget cuts are forcing the council to almost halve the museum’s funding from £80,000 a year to £45,000.

While trust members formulate their application, they are looking for support from town and parish councils in the Helston and Lizard area so that bids can be made for match funding.

Helston Town Council has agreed to add £1,000 into its budget each year to go towards the museum, with many parish councils also offering support.

Mr Turnbull said: “The museum is Helston and the Lizard – not just Helston. It’s nice to see a little bit of support there. Over the next few months we have to try and find a bit more funding, before we as a group would be prepared to sign a contract.

“There’s a positive that could come from this, but we have got to find a way of managing the funding gap – and hopefully find more funding to open for more hours.”

Mr Turnbull said a key factor in its success would be volunteers coming forward to give just an hour or two of their time each week, to man the museum and shop, show visitors around, carry out archiving and other tasks where support is vital.

A volunteers’ event will be held at the museum on Saturday, January 19 between 1pm until 3pm. This will include a tour and information about future plans.

Comments (4)

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10:42am Thu 10 Jan 13

Gill Zella Martin 09 says...

Excellent news, I hope it all goes well for them. The museum is an asset to Helston and for it to be run by a group of dedicated people that will have the best interests of the museum at heart can only be a good thing.
Excellent news, I hope it all goes well for them. The museum is an asset to Helston and for it to be run by a group of dedicated people that will have the best interests of the museum at heart can only be a good thing. Gill Zella Martin 09
  • Score: 0

11:08am Thu 10 Jan 13

meerkats says...

Best of luck to them , hope it all goes well.
Best of luck to them , hope it all goes well. meerkats
  • Score: 0

11:28am Thu 10 Jan 13

ronedgcumbe says...

Best of luck to the group.
Best of luck to the group. ronedgcumbe
  • Score: 0

1:02pm Wed 16 Jan 13

David Pascoe says...

I wish them luck, but I think they are involving the wrong people. Has anyone else noticed when these three councillors get involved, its the kiss of death. Judith haycock, with a lot of support in the area, opposed the new house on the old prison site. result. approved and now built. judith haycock supported restricting the parking in wendron street. result, parking to remain as it is now. and the two disastrous years of the boase mayorality can be looked at in almost every single issue of the packet for those two years.

If you are going to take on a community project, at least choose people who have a track record of being winners, not losers.

For a start I would suggest the SKA, who have achieved a stunning result at the cattle market. Notice who wasnt involved in this. The three I have just mentioned.
I wish them luck, but I think they are involving the wrong people. Has anyone else noticed when these three councillors get involved, its the kiss of death. Judith haycock, with a lot of support in the area, opposed the new house on the old prison site. result. approved and now built. judith haycock supported restricting the parking in wendron street. result, parking to remain as it is now. and the two disastrous years of the boase mayorality can be looked at in almost every single issue of the packet for those two years. If you are going to take on a community project, at least choose people who have a track record of being winners, not losers. For a start I would suggest the SKA, who have achieved a stunning result at the cattle market. Notice who wasnt involved in this. The three I have just mentioned. David Pascoe
  • Score: 0

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