Six summerhouses and new picnic area among improvements at Hartlepool gun battery museum
Visitors to a Hartlepool museum that tells the story of one of the key moments in the town's history will notice some improvements when it reopens.
The Heugh Battery Museum on the Headland, which recounts the 1914 Hartlepool bombardment, has made changes to its entrance and added a new cafe facility after being awarded £8,000 of funding.
It has been provided by the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority from the Reconnecting Communities project which is supporting cultural venues to develop new ways of reaching audiences and visitors during the pandemic.
Six Dutch barn style summerhouses have been erected in the picnic area of the gun battery museum to provide somewhere for visitors to enjoy refreshments when visiting or just enjoying a walk around the historic Headland.
Museum manager, Diane Stephens said: “We were very lucky to be awarded £8,000 and have achieved something outstanding for the museum with the support of Great Place Tees Valley.
"We are really looking forward to reopening and welcoming visitors back to the museum and the new café facilities. We are a great place to visit!”
Each of the summerhouses, supplied by R&B Sheds and Fencing, in Peterlee, are themed to reflect the museum’s collections of First World War and Second World War objects.
Children from across Hartlepool were provided with craft bags made by PEG Creations containing materials to make something to fit the themes of Wartime Food, Animals at War, Homefront, First World War and Second World War.
Their artwork is now proudly on display in the summerhouses which the museum hopes visitors will enjoy once lockdown restrictions are lifted.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “The Heugh Battery is a hidden gem and since discovering it, I’ve done all I can to champion this nationally significant attraction to secure its long-term success, including providing nearly £5,000 in May 2019 to help secure it’s future.
"This new funding has improved the museum even further and I’d encourage everyone to see it for themselves when it reopens.”
Last year the museum was awarded £71,573 in the first round of the Government’s £1.57billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) to survive the financial effects of the pandemic.
It has been closed to visitors since the first national lockdown last March.