Facilities – Lytham Heritage Group
- Lytham Heritage Centre
- Lytham Windmill and Lifeboat Museum
- Lytham Windmill
- Lytham Old Lifeboat House
- Lytham Archive Centre at Lytham Library
- The Antiquarian
- The Antiquarian is the Group’s quarterly newsletter
In its desire to create a permanent exhibition centre of its own in the town, The Group successfully acquired Number 2 Henry Street in 1996. The building had previously been occupied by the Trustees Savings Bank and would later benefit from a munificent benefaction by Mrs Audrey Kirby in memory of her late husband.
Since 1996, The Group has spent over £189,000 of its funds, derived from a legacy from a former member, Mrs Florence Peak, in converting the bank premises into a superb exhibition centre.
The Lytham Heritage Centre opened in 1997, the crowning glory of the Group’s aspirations for its own premises. The Grade II Listed Building which was the recipient of a Civic Conservation Award, is suitably located in the town centre overlooking the pedestrianised Piazza. It is available to kindred and other societies who wish to promote their image; enquiries are invited.
In 1989, Fylde Borough Council, aided by grants from the Countryside Commission and supported by monies from the European Commission, concluded the refurbishment of Lytham Windmill. The building was opened as a tourist attraction with tourist information centre and also offered facilities as an exhibition centre.
The Group, with its strong element of history and conservation, staged a summer exhibition in the Windmill, and this exhibition has become a permanent feature which is regularly reviewed and improved. Annually attracting over 30,000 visitors from all over the world, the exhibition includes sections recording aspects of Lytham’s historical past. The Windmill also acts as a link with the Lancashire Education Authority which encourages visits from some 150 of its schools.
In 2015 the Group also took on the Lytham Old Lifeboat House next to the Windmill. The museum in the mill has been extended to become Lytham Windmill and Lifeboat Museum. The building houses an exhibition of the Mexico Lifeboat Disaster from 1886 and also houses an old wooden sailing lifeboat “Chapman” built in 1901.
Volunteer members of The Group are on hand for a regular programme of school visits to the Windmill. These stewards are delighted to explain the intricacies and history of the milling processes, together with details of local history, to their young visitors.
The Group’s archives are housed in their own room on the first floor of Lytham Institute (the old Lytham Library.) Here we store our large collection of items, including photographs and documents covering the history and families of Lytham, starting with the Priory in 1196 up to recent times. These documents are often rare and may not always be found elsewhere, making them useful to local history researchers and family historians.
Should you wish to use The Group’s Archives we are normally open 2.00pm to 4.00pm on Wednesday.
Quarterly Newsletter “The Antiquarian”
The Group publishes a quarterly newsletter, The Antiquarian, which is circulated free to all members and includes items of topical interest and local history, plus other records of Lytham’s past.