Contract set to be handed out for work to revamp museum

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THE dramatic remodelling of a museum will take a step closer as a council is set to hand out a £500,000 contract to carry out its revamp.

Westbury Manor Museum, in West Street, Fareham will be ‘transformed’ into a ‘vibrant culture stop’ next year.

The £650,000 project will see its ground floor transformed into a cultural space with pop-up exhibitions and the railings on the front courtyard removed to create a garden patio.

The upstairs of the museum will also be turned into a digital exhibition charting the history of Fareham, with space converted to incubator studios for businesses to work in.

Hampshire Cultural Trust has contributed a £100,000 grant for the works, with Hampshire County Council Architects providing an extra £67,000.

Fareham Borough Council will hand out a £483,000 contract to a tender to carry out the works at a meeting of the council’s executive on Monday, January 9.

One of four potential contractors will carry out the project.

The work on the historic Grade-II listed building is due to plummeting visitor figures over the past few years.

More than 10,000 fewer people visited the museum in April 2015 to this March, when compared to figures from April 2013 to March 2014.

The work is expected to begin later next month.