Barnsley’s first-museum opened to a crowd – as hundreds gathered in the town centre to welcome South Yorkshire’s newest tourist attraction.
Experience Barnsley has been billed as a museum ‘by the people, for the people,’ and features hundreds of stories and objects, exploring the town’s past, present and future – all of it donated by local people.
Dr John Tanner, project leader, said: “About four years ago we asked the people of Barnsley ‘what you got?’ and they came forward with hundreds of items – the fantastic stuff you see in the museum.
“Displays will change regularly, so get in touch if you have something to share.”
More than 200 Barnsley schoolchildren helped to cut a ribbon – which had been wound through the crowd – to officially open the museum in the Town Hall yesterday afternoon.
Barry Almond, aged 71, of Worsbrough, said: “This is a long-time coming for Barnsley and it’s clear a lot of work has gone in here. In a time where we seem to be losing a lot of things, this is a great addition for the town.”
Wife Rita, 68, said: “It’s an absolute credit to the people who’ve pulled it together.
“As a local lady there’s lots of items I can relate to and remember – including an old typewriter I learned to type on years ago as a student at Barnsley College ever so many years ago.”
Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Experience Barnsley will open seven days a week and admission is free.