Black Country museum gets major boost

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£9.8m to rebuild townscape from 1940s.

The Black Country Living Museum in Dudley will go ahead with an ambitious expansion programme following a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £9.8 million.

The funding will see the museum recreate a local townscape, complete with a pub, library and bowling green on the museum’s site.

Several important historic buildings will be taken down and relocated from Dudley, West Bromwich and Wolverhampton. Other iconic buildings that have disappeared will also be recreated using archive images and information. There will also be a major revamp of  the museum's learning facilities.

The expansion will be the first phase of a of a £21.7m project BCLM: Forging Ahead a masterplan which aims to increase the size of the museum by a third.

Black Country Living Museums says the project, which will create 450 jobs, is a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity " to save landmark community and commercial buildings from demolition and rebuild them.

Ros Kerslake, chief executive of the Heritage Lottery Fund, said: "Black Country Living Museum is one of the UK's most popular open-air museums bringing knowledge of the country's industrial past to a national and international audience.

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