Museum has grand plans for centenary

20th Battalion (Tyneside Scottish) Northumberland Fusiliers training on Salisbury Plain.
20th Battalion (Tyneside Scottish) Northumberland Fusiliers training on Salisbury Plain.

A north Northumberland museum has also had success in securing lottery cash this week.

Thanks to a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant of almost £300,000, the Fusiliers Museum of Northumberland, which is located at Alnwick Castle, can now get its Call to Action project underway.

The museum tells the story of a North East regiment with a record of 340 years of continuous service, from its origin in 1674 to the present day.

Known in its time as the Fifth of Foot, and as the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, it is now part of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.

As part of the project, the Fusiliers Museum will be recruiting an activities officer with a brief to bring the museum to life with activities for young visitors and to develop outreach activities for a range of other groups. He/she will also have responsibility for supporting volunteers and recruiting new members to the existing volunteer team.

The new recruit will begin by working with volunteers on developing a special exhibition to mark the centenary of the First World War.

The exhibition, on the museum’s ground floor, will run for three years and will commemorate the service of the Northumberland Fusiliers, who raised 52 battalions in the Great War, and the exhibition will look at the links between soldiers on service and their families at home.

There will also be events and activities for young people and families, and opportunities to handle objects from the museum’s collections.

At the same time, the two upper floors of the museum will be refurbished and brought up-to-date. They will trace themes across 340 years of the regiment’s history and also tell the stories of people and personalities from the regiment, their service and in some cases their later lives.

John Armstrong, chairman of the museum trustees, said: “The museum is so grateful for the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund.

“HLF support means that the museum can mark the service of the soldiers of the Northumberland Fusiliers in the First World War with a special exhibition and activities, something so important for the museum to do.”