Let’s put our hidden relics on display

Mothballed: This magnificent steam engine is in storage
Mothballed: This magnificent steam engine is in storage

HIDDEN treasures charting Calderdale’s history could be exhibited across the district in public buildings.

Councillors said too many items are locked away in storerooms away from public view and that was one option for the future.

The communities scrutiny panel was considering a report on the future of the museums and galleries service.

It faces a series of challenges which include lack of storage space, financial constraints, and the possibility of the service operating through a trust.

Councillor Ian Cooper (Con, Tod) and panel chairman, said: “We have some priceless objects hidden away for too long.

“This is an opportunity to look at various ways to move some of these exhibits.

“There are facilities in our towns that could house some of the artefacts we hold and make them available to wider public access.”

The council is also considering getting organisations and volunteers involved in running the service.

Councillor Stout (Ind, Brighouse) said there was a lot of interest in the service and pointed out when consideration was given to moving library archives to Wakefield a 15,000-name petition followed.

Local historian David Glover told the panel he was concerned about local heritage and didn’t want any retrograde steps taken.

He said volunteers were no substitute for curators in keeping and looking after items.

And, while moving items around the borough was a nice idea, security was not the only consideration because how items were kept was also important.

The panel endorsed the work being done by officers on the future strategy of the service ahead of a report going to cabinet in the autumn.

l Should the collection of artefacts be accessible across the borough? Email yoursay@halifaxcourier.co.uk