Spalding Gentlemen's Society's chairman Petronella Keeling and care and admin assistant Eleanor Chadd

Museum’s £1.8m windfall

A Spalding museum has been awarded £1.8m towards repairs to its Grade II listed building.

The money has come from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and will see Spalding’s Gentlemen’s Society Broad Street home completely renovated.
The charity has had to match fund 20 per cent of the cost for works to go ahead.
“The work will repair our landmark, listed museum building, securing the future of our nationally important Original Collection which has recently been awarded Designated Status,” said Petronella Keeling, chairman of the museum’s trustees. “We have been conscious of increasing cracks in its old building and, after inspection by Historic England’s experts, it was recommended that the 1960s rear extensions of the museum should be demolished as they were pulling the older, listed building apart.”
As well as repairs, the grant, a total of £1.845m, will enable the rear extensions. The charity had to buy the former Business Centre in order to access the rear of its property.
“The next step towards our ambition will be to find the funding to extend the museum into the former Business Centre site, to create a fully open public museum and learning centre,” added Petronella.
The museum will remain open Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm until mid-September. It will also continue running the SGS room in Ayscoughfee Hall. A research library will also open in June as the Centre for Fenland Studies, followed by a new exhibition in early 2025.
During the repairs the museum will continue to run its public, membership and volunteer activities.
“SGS is grateful to Ayscoughfee Hall Museum and South Holland District Council for hosting our collection during buildingwork,” added Petronella.

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