Today Middlewich Town Council has received £8,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) through their Sharing Heritage programme, for an exciting project, The Middlewich Settlement Exhibition – Heritage Community Partnership in Action. Led by Middlewich Town Council and working with Cheshire East Council, Cheshire West Museums, Middlewich Heritage Society and our volunteers, the project focuses on revamping the 2001 Roman exhibition in the library. This space is the only permanent heritage link to schools, community and visitors, making it very valuable.
Collectively we want to achieve a more effective use of the space, design new interpretation boards, buy an extra display case and access new materials, giving more control to the community in terms of what they want to see represented.
The aim is not simply a one-off change to the Library Exhibition but to build a programme of sustainable minor changes to accommodate different themes or new finds. This means that the Middlewich Settlement Exhibition is community driven, a permanent public space that can change and evolve. We will focus on the relationship between the early settlers and modern Middlewich, presenting us with an opportunity to compare the different settlements through the ages and bring new objects out of store.
As this work involves handling of objects, we will photograph and document any objects important to our understanding of the town’s development. This can be viewed as a ‘virtual museum’ working alongside the exhibition, allowing even more public access to collections.
Commenting on the award, Kerry Fletcher, Heritage Development Officer said: “This award brings with it a fantastic opportunity for Middlewich to have greater control and flexibility over its heritage and what we want to convey. The library is a key site for the public to gain access to archaeology and information on Middlewich, whether it’s the local residents, schools or visitors to our town”
‘We are excited to be involved in a project that will make the archaeology of Middlewich more accessible to the people of Middlewich’. Laura Pooley, Keeper of Early History, Cheshire West Museums.
Explaining the importance of the HLF support, Sara Hilton, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund North West, said: “This is an extremely exciting project driven by the residents of Middlewich. It demonstrates how our heritage can be a living part of a community bringing people together to learn from and enjoy their shared identity. We are delighted to be giving this very worthwhile venture our full support.”