The Fishermen’s Heritage Centre and Peter Coke Shell Gallery are now open daily for the rest of the summer until the end of September (see Opening Times page for full details).
During the closed season work progressed on several fronts. The large wooden doors of the lifeboat shed had become increasingly difficult to open and close and rust had weakened the hinges. It became necessary to fit new doors, in time for the new season. There was also a problem with rain and snow being blown into the shed on strong northerly winds during the winter (and occasionally, given our exposed location on the coast, during the summer as well, but without the snow). This problem was partly solved by fitting new doors, but further steps were also needed to keep the shed waterproof and a heavy plastic curtain has been installed which can be drawn across the inside of the doors during the winter to prevent rain and snow being blown in. The timbers of the lifeboat have adjusted to the salty environment and are in very good condition for their age, but any fresh (i.e. non-salty) water getting into the bottom of the boat could cause deterioration. During the recent winter CCF cadets from Greshams School under the leadership of Gareth Burnell erected a shelter over the front of the boat made from disused canvas tents as a temporary measure.
The work has now been completed but there has not been time for a thorough clean-up before the start of the season, so visitors may find the lifeboat shed a little more dusty than usual. We are very grateful to Sheringham Town Council for generously bearing the cost of the new doors.
In the shell gallery a thorough clean has been carried out and some rearrangement of the exhibits made to enable pieces which have been in storage recently to replace other pieces which have been on display. A large stock of shells for sale has been purchased, so look out for new acquisitions.