(Above) Anson Engine Museum Director Geoff Challinor
A small specialist museum in Cheshire run by one employee and a handful of volunteers has been shortlisted in two categories of a prestigious national award.
Anson Engine Museum in Poynton, Cheshire, houses a unique collection of more than 200 gas and oil engines, but receives no council or government funding towards its running costs.
The dedication of its chairman Geoff Challinor and his band of volunteers has now been rewarded with two nominations in the National Museums & Heritage Awards for Excellence.
The awards, which are part of the Museum and Heritage Show, are designed as "a showcase of the best in visitor attractions in the country," celebrating the expertise and innovation in the museums industry.
Anson's successful entry was based on its Diesel Exhibition which ran during the summer of 2008, resulting in shortlist nominations in the Classic and Project on a Limited Budget categories.
It pitched the museum against national big hitters such as National Museums Liverpool, the Natural History Museum, a National Trust project and a Somme Documentary developed by Inniskillings Museum and Blackbox AV Ltd.
"We are absolutely thrilled to have been shortlisted. One would have been great, but two categories is really fantastic," said Geoff Challinor, Museum Chairman.
"Whatever the outcome next month, we know that making the shortlist is thanks to the hard work and dedication of the volunteers who make the museum such a success. We strive to delight our visitors and this news shows that our efforts can be judged on a National stage."
Challinor and his band of dedicated volunteers are hoping they can give the national museums a run for their money and are asking their supporters to keep their fingers crossed for May 13th.
The Museums & Heritage Show is the UK's leading trade exhibition for the world of museums, galleries and heritage visitor attractions. For more information visit www.museumsandheritage.com.