Museum marks 500 years of mariners’ organisation

RNLI Grace darling museum, Bamburgh.
RNLI Grace darling museum, Bamburgh.

A north Northumberland museum is hosting an exhibition to mark the quincentenary of a sailors’ organisation.

Trinity House has been protecting mariners for 500 years and to celebrate its birthday, a temporary exhibition telling the story of the organisation is on display at the RNLI Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh until Sunday, September 7.

It was founded in 1514 when Henry VIII presented a royal charter to the newly-established Corporation of Trinity House. Today, its primary concern is still the safety and welfare of mariners.

The organisation trains young men and women for a career in the Merchant Navy and it looks after mariners, providing relief and welfare through the Trinity House Maritime Charity.

Another major role for Trinity House is maintaining the lighthouses, lightships and lighted buoys around the coast of England and Wales, ensuring the safety of sailors and sea-goers, whether on business or pleasure voyages.

Until the 20th century, the organisation employed lighthouse keepers, including Grace Darling’s father, William, to ensure that the lights were always well maintained and working at places such as Longstone Lighthouse on the Farnes.

The RNLI Grace Darling Museum is open Monday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm (last admission 4.15pm).