Southsea museum all-a-flutter after Talia earns it a £5,000 cash windfall

WINNER Talia Lewis won �5,000 for the Butterfly Museum in Southsea.    Picture: Ian Hargreaves (113175-1)
WINNER Talia Lewis won �5,000 for the Butterfly Museum in Southsea. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (113175-1)
Picture: Malcolm Wells

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WITH rare and beautiful butterflies fluttering overhead, scary dinosaurs on show and exhibitions on the abundant local wildlife, Cumberland House Museum is like no other.

The natural history museum, particularly its butterfly house, is a favourite with families in the city.

So when 12-year-old Oaklands Catholic School pupil Talia Lewis, from Southsea, spotted a competition to win a £5,000 makeover for her favourite place in the community she went for it.

The Year Seven pupil nominated the museum, in Eastern Parade, Southsea, because she felt that although it was brilliant it could do with a little tender loving care.

Through her teacher, Jennifer Whelan, she entered the competition, run by Dettol on Facebook – and won.

She said: ‘The museum has much more than what it seems from the outside.

‘It’s not just butterflies, but dinosaurs and insects and it’s home to many fish and lizards and a whole feature on the Ice Age.

‘It educates children in a child-friendly way and is a great family attraction but is in need of a little care.’

Miss Whelan agreed. She said: ‘The museum is located in a superb area with some brilliant features.

‘It is a fabulous teaching resource but, as Talia said, is in need of some modernisation and refurbishment.’

The cash has been donated to the museum as part of Dettol’s Mission for Life campaign.

It is still running and aims to promote a healthy environment at home and in the community.

Dr Jane Mee, museums and records manager at Portsmouth City Council, said: ‘It’s really great that a school child thought to nominate Cumberland House.

‘It’s wonderful to have that support from local families.

‘We want to improve a small area where we show video clips which we know children really like.

‘We’d like to update the equipment and the footage available.

‘It will be natural history footage generally but we’re quite keen to cover the local environment as well to show people that cities have highly exciting wildlife too.’

For more information visit Click on the ‘like’ button for Dettol to donate 20p to Save The Children.