Bromsgrove Museum to open this weekend for the first time in six years

By Tristan Harris Wednesday 05 February 2014 Updated: 05/02 22:37

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Buy photos » Dennis Norton with the Liver bird picture in the Burton window. Picture by Marcus Mingins 0614017MMR

RESIDENTS will get a chance to see the exhibits on offer at the Bromsgrove Museum this weekend when the building opens its doors from 10am to 4pm on Saturday (February 8) and Sunday (February 9).

The venue, on Birmingham Road, closed its doors in 2008 due to low visitor numbers and has remained shut ever since.

There will be a variety of items on display from the Norton Collection which the former district council leader Dennis Norton has amassed for the town.

Among them will be photographs produced from 2,700 glass plates that Mr Norton bought from the Bromsgrove Guild.

One of the pictures, which has never been published before, is of the Liver Bird statue which was designed and made by The Guild in 1910 before taking pride of place on the Liver Building in Liverpool.

The picture will be in the window of Burton menswear on Bromsgrove High Street to promote the weekend event and will be moved to the museum tomorrow.

There will also be 180 hand-drawn designs from The Guild and a host of other items that many people will not have seen.

Mr Norton said: "The museum has been closed for six years and the Bromsgrove residents have missed out on seeing these important pieces of the town's history for so long."

As well as the exhibits, Mr Norton is hoping visitors will join The Friends of the Norton Collection Charitable Trust and organise fund-raising ideas so the organisation can buy a building to house the displays.

We reported last July how the district council's cabinet voted to sell the building to The Friends of the Norton Collection Charitable Trust for £200,000 but one of the conditions was that the sale went through within six months.

That has not happened and the trust has now turned its attention to Steps House, the building next to the St John's Church steps which was formerly occupied by estate agent Victor Powell.

"The building is far superior - it's much bigger, in a better position and more adaptable.

"We want to run it as a community museum with volunteers.

"We think the new site will benefit the town and help educate young people about its past," added Mr Norton.

Anyone who cannot get to the musum over the weekend but wants to find out more about supporting the trust can write to Mr Norton at The Forge, Broad Green, Tardebigge, Bromsgrove. B60 1LW.

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