Museum faces financial crisis

Newton Stewart Museum is appealing for help as it faces a cash crisis.

The amenity says it is “going through a bad patch financially at present as there are many calls on finance which is just not there and we need to encourage more paying visitors in order to prevent a complete close down”.

A number of initiatives are being developed which, it is hoped, will help to turn around its position.

The museum said: “We are effecting some changes which we hope will make a visit worthwhile – for example extending the opening hours over the lunchtime period, cleaning up and making the outside more attractive and welcoming so that those who do visit will go away with the image of a clean and well looked after museum and have good things to say about it!

“It is surprising just how many residents of Newton Stewart and the surrounding area have never been inside to look round.”

The museum wants local people to ask themselves two questions: have you ever been to the museum in and when did you last to go the museum in York Road? It said: “If the answer is ‘don’t know’ or ‘can’t remember’, now is the right time to put things right.

“The museum opens for the new season on Monday, April 1, at 2pm. It is the perfect place to go to step back a little in time and have a complete change from all the electronic gadgetry that clutters up our lives in the 21st century.

“It will surprise you to see things that granny may still have tucked away or even still in use or maybe even used yourself as a child. ‘Oooh, I remember those’ is often heard among the domestic and agricultural groups. There are sections on industrial items, fabric and costumes, photographs, archives and books, trophies, medals and coins as well as natural history.

“A big draw is the collection of cycles, motor and pedal, always guaranteed to provoke discussions on the merits of ancient and modern.”

All the items in the museum are collected from the Cree Valley. The history of the area surrounding Newton Stewart is all conserved and preserved by a band of volunteer custodians who will be only too pleased to explain and inform should you require it.

The museum is definitely well worth a visit and the opening times are: April, May and June, 2pm to 5pm; July, August and first two weeks of September, 10.30am to 5pm.

Anyone interested in helping with this worthy charity should contact Gene Fryatt on 01671 401048.