Petition launched to keep Titanic in Lancashire Museum in Colne

Nigel Hampson at the Titanic in Lancashire Museum which is moving location.'Photo Ben Parsons

Nigel Hampson at the Titanic in Lancashire Museum which is moving location.'Photo Ben Parsons

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The curator of Colne’s Titanic in Lancashire Museum has said he is “happy to look at” workable solutions to keep his attraction in the town.

At the start of the month, we exclusively revealed Nigel Hampson’s plans to move his Church Street museum to Samlesbury Hall, near Preston, at the end of June.

But now, following a petition launched by the Chairman of Waterside Neighbourhood Action Group Derek Mann, Mr Hampson has agreed to enter into talks with local councillors about other possible sites in Colne.

Mr Hampson said that it would be preferable to keep the Titanic in Lancashire museum in the hometown of the doomed ship’s bandmaster Wallace Hartley.

But he argued that the “current premises are simply not up to the task”.

If he were to move to Samlesbury Hall, Mr Hampson, who lives in Brierfield, said he would be able to triple the size of his exhibition.

He added: “We are desperate for more space and better access for people with mobility problems.

“School and coach parties suffer due to this lack of space, we do the very best we can, but are painfully aware that we can not give them as interesting and unique a visit as we could, given bigger premises.

“When I look around Colne at some of the beautiful buildings that we are blessed with that are standing empty and suffering from neglect it’s heartbreaking.

“If a workable solution can be found to keep the museum in Colne I would be very happy to look at it.”

Mr Hampson also added that a joint application between the museum and another agency for lottery funding could provide a “workable framework for the museum’s future development and sustainability in the town”.

According to Mr Mann a number of residents have suggested various options to keep the Titanic in Lancashire Museum in Pendle.

During a recent protest event, Mr Mann was given suggestions such as the old school house building, in Exchange Street.

The Titanic in Lancashire Museum, which is run by a small team of volunteers, has been based in Colne for the past 18 months.

It tells the story of the RMS Titanic and her historic maiden and only voyage through artefacts, pictures and a documentary.

Mr Hampson had been touring with his collection, before he was offered a permanent base in the town by the Rev. Tony Rindl.

His fascination with the Titanic was sparked as a youngster, after he bought a model kit with a £10 Woolworths’ gift voucher.