RUBICON Leisure has received a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £35,700 for the ‘Forging Forward’ project at Forge Mill Needle Museum.
Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the project looks towards making some exciting developments to the site following its year of closure.
The project is also supported with a financial contribution from the Worshipful Company of Needlemakers.
‘Forging Forward’ looks to make some immediate changes to benefit local people with the introduction of Forest School activities at both the Museum and the Arrow Valley Visitor Centre.
Improvements will also be made to the museum’s small function room to welcome back both community groups and private hirers.
The project will also benefit those who live further afield with the addition of an online catalogue to the museum’s website.
This will enable researchers to search the wide ranging archives held by the museum and request copies.
Looking to the longer term recovery and resilience of Forge Mill some comprehensive consultation will be carried out with residents to inform developments to the site and form the basis of a five year business plan and strategy.
Forge Mill Needle Museum housed within a Victorian Mill building tells the story of needle making.
The museum has an extensive collection of needle and fishing tackle artefacts as well as a substantial archive relating to Redditch industries.
Bordesley Abbey Visitor Centre is also located in the grounds of the museum adjacent to the Abbey Meadows and tells the story of a thriving Cistercian Abbey through its excavated archaeology.
Commenting on the award, Rubicon managing director Simon Ingyon said: “We are thrilled to have received this support thanks to National Lottery players and are confident the project will support the re-opening of a much-loved community asset following a difficult year of closure.
“The grant will allow the museum to diversify and become more resilient, providing ongoing cultural opportunities for generations to come.”