A MAJOR refurbishment is under way at Kendal Museum to restore a gallery that has not been on display since the 1970s.

The project will refurbish the Kendal and Westmorland Gallery to its original condition and house four of its major collections – Egyptian, Roman, Stone Age and Local History.

Around half the artefacts to be displayed in the renovated space have never gone on public display before.

Museum curator and manager Carol Davies said her vision was to take the space back to how it would have looked in its previous life as a wool warehouse.

“The room was full of chipboard partitions and walls and I want to open it up again, make it light and airy and show off its beautiful columns.

“Each display area will have a large photographic screen featuring collection items and scenery – they are stunning and will capture the visitors’ attention as soon as they walk in.

“Our artefacts are an amazing legacy of the Victorian era of collecting and my plan is to get it all out for the public to see.”

The project was funded with £4,600 from Museum Development North West, with £3,000 given from Kendal Town Council for new display cases.

The museum has also made two large funding bids to support its plan for ‘digitisation’.

If successful it could show items to the public that are too delicate to be put on display through multi-media.

Also in the pipeline is the construction of three ‘incubation units’ to be rented out to students with an idea for a business, with support from Kendal College.

These units have been funded by a £10,000 grant from Kendal Futures, with an extra £5,000 from Kendal College, who now manage the museum.

Mrs Davies said: “I have been here for 27 years and I’ve never been so excited for the museum.

“Kendal College has given us a bright new future and we’re trying to seek out new opportunities to get this wonderful heritage out to the public.”

Work on the Kendal and Westmorland Gallery is expected to be completed in February.