£200k bid for Ottery museum

PUBLISHED: 17:03 28 February 2009 | UPDATED: 08:38 18 June 2010

A £200,000 fundraising bid has been launched to provide Ottery with its first permanent museum.

A £200,000 fundraising bid has been launched to provide Ottery with its first permanent museum.

The town's Heritage Society wants to buy a building in the grounds of the Convent after it was put for sale by a developer.

Trustees of the society have launched a fund-raising campaign to raise the cash to purchase and refurbish the building.

Ottery's history was boxed up when the Heritage Society lost its temporary base in the Salston Manor Hotel as it closed in 2007.

Heritage Society chairman Robert Neal said: "Ottery is one of the oldest and most historic towns in Devon with such a colourful past. Any town of any significance has its own museum where people can discover the artefacts and past that has made it what it is. They have one in places like Exmouth, Honiton and Whimple. One for Ottery has been on the agenda for decades.

"While the society vigorously campaigns for a permanent home, it continues with its energetic programme to research local history, to collect and preserve Ottery's past."

A museum for Ottery was a key factor behind the founding of the society in 1999. An ongoing programme of meetings, events, exhibitions, lectures and presentations, has seen its membership soar to more than 200.

Membership of the society is open to all and anyone interested in furthering the work of the museum bid, or wishing to discuss the plans, can contact Mr Neal on (01404) 813686 or Dr John Pilsworth on (01404) 812737.

For the immediate future, donations can be made to Phyllis Baxter at Ottery's Tourist Information Centre in Broad Street.

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