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Otley Museum set to show treasures from its archive
Otley Museum will reveal some “hidden treasures” next weekend – but its hopes of moving into a new town centre base appear to be in trouble.
Museum volunteers are looking forward to giving presentations about the collection and their First World War Centenary project when they hold two Heritage Open Days, on Friday, September 13, and Saturday, September 14.
Their aim of trying to set up a new home in the former One Stop Centre’s annexe, off Courthouse Street, however, has been de-railed by the response from owner Leeds City Council.
The museum has been searching for a base since the Civic Centre closed in 2010, and believed the property – large enough to display the artefacts it has had to keep in storage, and with on-site parking – could have been ideal.
But the council has now indicated that it would prefer to sell the whole site to a commercial buyer and re-invest the proceeds into the Civic Centre, should it eventually re-open.
In its latest publicity leaflet, the museum states: “We are very disappointed at this as we are now in limbo awaiting further decisions by Leeds City Council and Otley Town Council.
“But we are not going to let it affect the projects we have been working so hard on.”
Those have included putting on displays at the Otley Core Resource Centre, including the current Made in Yorkshire exhibition, and a display on the history of cycling staged at Otley Library earlier this year, for Otley Word Feast.
Volunteers will also reveal more about the museum’s major ongoing project, to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, on the heritage open days which run from 10am to 3pm on the Friday and 10am to 4pm on the Saturday.
They said: “We hope to see many friends during the open days when we will have an opportunity to remind ourselves of the many fascinating objects in the collection, which we are anxious to preserve and display.”
Volunteers will also be available to answer questions on both days, which take place at the museum’s archive collection base at Wellcroft House, on Crow Lane.
Visit otleymuseum.org for more details.