Update on the progress at Newark’s Civil War Museum
The transformation on Appletongate in Newark is becoming more and more noticeable now as work on the brand new National Civil War Museum is taking shape very nicely. I paid the guys a visit towards the end of 2013, to see what was planned for the site and how it would look come its completion in early 2015. You can read up on my first visit by clicking here. I recently went back on-site, donned the hard hat and examined the progress to date. Since my previous visit, there has been a significant amount of structural work carried out and the interiors of the buildings are now at a stage where they’ve been stripped back and are being prepared for the new flooring, and interior to be installed. My guide was Michael Constantine, Manager of the new National Civil War Centre, and he was only too eager to give me a sneak peak at the developments. He led me into the roof of the Tudor building, an area I explored on my previous visit. As with many of the rooms, the old flooring has been lifted, ready for new boards to be laid. However what I was very pleased to hear was that where possible, the old wooden floor boards have been saved and the plan is to re-use them to maintain the character of the building. The history of the building is only too clear when these boards are examined closely and keeping them where possible will maintain the charm and character of the rooms.
Over the winter and spring months, some exciting discoveries were unearthed in the Tudor building in the form of two separate coats of arms. The meaning behind the them is unknown and the date from which they originate is still a mystery. However, when the wallpaper was peeled back, it was clear to Michael and the team that they needed preserving and that’s exactly what has happened to them, with the intention that they will be used in the new Museum. A specialist has recently been on site to extract them and preserve them ready for exhibiting. As well as the coats of arms, several examples of graffiti in the building have been kept, thought to of been drawn or engraved by school children when the building was being used as a grammar school. Some of the graffiti dates back as far as 1608.
Everything is coming together very nicely at the site and the team are on track for the early 2015 opening scheduled in to the plan. A video has recently been posted on Youtube regarding the developments, taking a sneak peak behind the scaffolding to see how the transformation is taking shape in order to bring the National Civil War Centre to life. You can view this video by clicking here.
Personally I am very excited for the museum to open, as it will become a valuable asset to Newark and to the county as a whole in terms of attracting tourism to the area. With 60,000 visitors expected annually, the boost to tourism in Newark and the county will be phenomenal, with this being the dedicated Civil War centre in the country. Keep track of further updates on the work at the centre by visiting our Facebook and Twitter pages for news, views and imagery.