Maritime Museum set to reopen soon

A chance to discover the maritime history of Salcombe and South Devon

Thursday 24th March 2022 7:00 am
Salcombe Maritime Museum
(Salcombe Maritime Museum )

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Over the past few weeks the enthusiastic band of volunteers who run Salcombe’s Maritime Museum has been busy preparing to welcome visitors for the 2022 season. During its 48 years of existence, the Museum, which is just below the Salcombe Tourist Information Centre in Market Street, has amassed a veritable treasure trove of models, paintings, photographs and artefacts. Together they tell the story of Salcombe’s links with ships and the sea from ancient times to the Second World War.

The Museum has a unique gallery of paintings depicting the famed racing fruit schooners built in Salcombe during the 19th century. Shipbuilding and, until recently traditional wooden boatbuilding, were carried on in the town and the Museum houses an impressive collection of tools and artefacts telling the story of these and other maritime trades. Also displayed in the Ship Room are momentoes of the time when the US Navy took over the harbour to prepare landing craft for the 1944 invasion of Normandy.

In the Wreck Room is a fascinating collection of sea-bed treasures recovered by divers from the hundreds of shipwrecks that line our coast. New additions this year include a gold coin from HMS Ramillies wrecked in 1760 and a beautiful brass lantern holder from the famous Finnish windjammer Herzogin Cecilie which ran aground in 1936.

There is also plenty to amuse and engage younger visitors including hands-on displays, models and pirates’ treasure. A new addition this year is a childrens’ work station in the ‘young sailors’ corner with lots of fun activities.

Every year the Museum mounts a special exhibition and the theme for 2022 is ‘Salcombe and the Downfall of Napoleon Bonaparte’.

From Friday April 1 the Museum will be open every day between 10.30am and 12.30pm and between 2.30pm and 4.30p until October 31 with no charge for entry.

The Museum is always looking for volunteers to join the team. If you are interested, please contact the Curator, Roger Barrett, on 01548 854108 or email [email protected]

To find out more visit the Museum’s website at where you can take a ‘virtual tour’ and find a whole host of resources including children’s activities, old photos, maritime history papers and self-guided walks. You can also follow the Museum on Facebook and Instagram.

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