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Helmshore Mills Textile Museum to stay open longer by public demand
EXTRA opening hours are set to be approved for the popular Helmshore Mills Textile Museum – due to public demand.
Repeated trials of longer seasons at the venue, over the past three years, have proved there is a market for extending their traditional April to October run.
And county council officials believe that the move, opening for 43 weeks, instead of the current 31, could even generate a small profit.
Coun Marcus Johnstone, Lancashire’s cultural services cabinet member, is being asked to approve the recommendation on Monday.
Trials began in February 2011, when the museum was opened during the half-term holidays, generating more than 1,730 visitors.
This was followed by a similar exercise, the following autumn, which resulted in almost 3,700 additional people through the doors.
And for each successive year, when the trial has been adopted, the same pattern has emerged, with ticket sales and extra income from the cafe and shop generally covering staff costs.
Proposals have now been drawn up to open daily during the February half-term holidays, then for four days a week until the current season starts on April 1.
Later, this would be mirrored by Helmshore Mill opening for four days a week through November, finishing the season on the first Sunday in December.
Helen Denton, adult services executive director at the county council, says in a report that it was projected that, again, ticket sales and extra income, would cover staff costs and result in a profit of around £2,225. She said: “Staff have been involved in discussions about the proposal during the pilot period and are in agreement with the proposal.”
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