Story Museum receives funding boost

Story Museum receives funding boost

The Story Museum in Oxford has reached the final stage of a £2m funding programme organised by the Arts Council.

The museum is one of 16 finalists in the Arts Council’s large capital funding programme and has already received an initial award of £199,648 to support its development plans. It hopes to redevelop its site on Pembroke Street in the centre of Oxford.

Tish Francis, joint director of The Story Museum, said: “This is wonderful news and a major step forwards in our plans to significantly improve the visitor experience and increase the range of activities we can offer to children, young people and families. Using our rough spaces over the past four years has taught us a lot about how best to develop the museum and this news provides real impetus to our fundraising efforts to secure the remaining match funding and bring our whole building into use by 2019.”

The directors want to increase the number of areas inside the museum from six to nine, including a 140-seater performance space, an early-years story-play space, a learning studio and resource room, an interactive multi-media space, an immersive ‘enchanted library’, and a climate-controlled ‘treasure chamber’ to display fragile and heritage items.

The funding will also allow directors to connect the three wings of the site and make the whole building wheelchair accessible.

The cost of the redevelopment works is estimated at just under £6m, said the museum, which hopes to triple its annual visitor numbers to more than 100,000 every year.