The Exeter City Supporters' Trust has welcomed a new grant from the National Lottery to help create a museum in and around St James Park.
The funding bid, which was submitted by the University of Exeter, working in partnership with the Trust’s History Group, has been successful in attracting grants of £63,700 with the main contribution coming from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) with a £50,700 grant made possible by National Lottery players.
The museum will build on the findings made while researching the History of St James Park project, also funded by the HLF, which was completed in April 2017.
The new project is due to start in September and run until 2019 – the 125th anniversary of the first known football match at the ground.
The museum approach will involve using the whole stadium as a base to display the heritage of Exeter City Football Club.
The wide ranging project will include:
- Seeking formal accreditation as a museum
- Sorting, cataloguing, digitising, storing and displaying the club’s heritage collection
- A series of new display cabinets to showcase the collection including a new one for fan’s memorabilia
- New outdoor and internal heritage displays
- A series of special exhibitions including ones drawing on collections held by former players and supporters
- Workshops and other events to involve supporter and local community groups
- Films and other additions to the digital Grecian Archive site (www.grecianarchive.exeter.ac.uk)
- Training for Volunteers
- Best practice guides to help other organisations
Welcoming the new grant, Paul Farley, club and Supporters' Trust director and chair of the Exeter City History Group said: “This is brilliant news. What a wonderful way to mark the 125 years of football at St James Park and to enrich the redevelopment currently underway.
"Massive thanks to the University of Exeter and the National Lottery for all their support. We look forward to working with supporters, former players and their families, local community groups and heritage organisations to develop a museum the club and city can be proud of.”
Gabriella Giannachi, from the University of Exeter said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be able to work with the Club and Trust to create a bespoke museum to host Exeter City Football Club’s amazing history.
"We can’t wait to celebrate the fantastic opportunities this grant offers by collaborating with players, past and present, fans, volunteers and anybody interested in football, history, Exeter, and heritage."
The project will run until March 2019. For more information or to offer to help in any way please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.