Tavistock Museum Re-Opens With a New Extension

Press release - March 2013

The Tavistock Museum Charitable Trust is pleased to announce that the town museum will re-open on Easter Saturday 30th March 2013. Visitors will for the first time enter from its new extension which has a ground level entrance from the Guildhall Square leading into a welcome area and interpretation rooms. There are also new kitchen facilities for the museum stewards, and a small shop area.

The former librarian’s cottage next to the main museum was completely refurbished last year with £50k funding support from Biffa Award. The new interpretation facilities will through displays and a new audio-visual system tell visitors more about the town, what they can see during their visit, and where they can walk or cycle. It will enable them to get much more out of their visit and hopefully encourage them to spend more time in our town to the benefit of local businesses. Particular attention is paid to explaining the role Tavistock now has as the eastern gateway to the West Devon and Cornwall Mining World Heritage site, and how the town came to have its fine public buildings, imposing villas and domestic model cottages, all built by the Bedford Estate from their vast mining royalties.

The new kitchen will be a very welcome facility for the museum stewards. This has been funded by Devon County Council through the support of Mrs. Debo Sellis, our county councillor. Also Messrs. Fairway kindly gave a kitchen sink and base unit to the museum.

Roderick Martin who is the Secretary to the Museum Charitable Trust said that the re-opening of the museum with a new ground-level entrance is a very big step forward for the museum. The Trust are most grateful for the support they have received from the Tavistock Town Council, from our main funder Biffa Award, and from Devon County Council, and for the contributions made to the success of the project made by many local builders, tradesmen and suppliers from the local area. The extended museum with its marvelous new interpretation facilities will enhance visitor experience and be a very big plus for tourism in the town.

This year the museum has a major exhibition Commemorating the Arrival in Tavistock of the 29th Infantry Division of the US Army Seventy Years Ago which has been arranged by Pater Gallie. It will complement plans to hold military vehicle parades and re-enactment activities in the town during the last weekend in May 2013.