© Norfolk Museums
This week sees a special birthday celebration for Cromer Museum in Norfolk.
The museum has played a massive part in the town’s tourist trade since it was officially opened by Lady Dowager Preston in 1978. Since that day, 30 years ago, an impressive 660,000 people have come through the doors.
In celebration of Cromer’s special day, people are invited to follow in the footsteps of those hordes of visitors and enjoy free entry from Sunday June 15 to Saturday June 21 2008. An exciting array of celebratory activities is also planned.
The special day itself will be marked on Sunday June 15 by the book launch of Rochelle Massingham-Mortimer’s Little Bear Lost, accompanied by a children's craft session. Rochelle is one of the museum's longest serving members of staff and has generously donated the book to Cromer Museum so that proceeds can go towards educational activities.
The festivities will then continue throughout June and July. Explore Cromer beyond the museum walls with a guided architecture walk on June 14 or a walk at the deserted medieval village of Godwick (near Fakenham) on June 28.
The opening of the museum in 1978. © Norfolk Museums
'Bring a Teddy' sessions on Friday June 20 invites pre-schoolers and their parents to participate in crafts and storytelling. Finally on July 16 and 17 from 2 - 4pm 'Mardle at the Museum' allows people to get together over a cup of coffee and chat about Cromer's past and present – bring in your memories and memorabilia!
Cromer was of great importance as a trading town until the 19th century when the importance of Norfolk as a centre for the wool industry declined. Fishing then remained as the mainstay of the town. Today the town is best known as a popular coastal tourist resort, a trend that began in the early 19th century.
Visitors to the museum can travel back in time to Victorian Cromer, with a visit to the Victorian fisherman’s cottage, and the Old Cromer Gallery. Learn about the town’s colourful history, including a mixed bathing scandal and the daring adventures of Henry Blogg, famous Cromer Lifeboatman. Step even further back in time; by viewing the new geology gallery, including 80 million year old Mosasaur bones from the North Norfolk coast.
Katie Brinkley is the 24 Hour Museum/Norwich HEART Student Writer in Norwich. Norwich Heritage Economic and Regeneration Trust (HEART) is the groundbreaking initiative to regenerate, manage and promote one of the most remarkable heritage resources in the UK and in Europe.