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The Brightlingsea Harpy - and inset, the museum's new sailmaking exhibit

Brightlingsea Harpy is centrepiece of new town museum display

Brightlingsea Museum opens its doors after its winter closure on Saturday (April 16) with a new exhibition about the early settlements in the area of the quarries to the northwest of the town.

Extensive archaeological excavations carried out over the years have discovered a fascinating insight to life in Brightlingsea from early Neolithic times through to the Bronze and Iron Ages, Romans and Anglo Saxons. Artefacts on display will include the Brightlingsea Harpy – pictured – made in Italy in the early years of the first century and found in the quarry. The exhibition, sponsored by the Brett Group and supported by the Colchester Archaeological Trust, will be on display until June 12.

During the winter months the museum's volunteers have a Sail Making in Brightlingsea display to the shipbuilding exhibition, showing off the town's reputation for highly skilled sailmakers with the help of a current sailmaker and equipment generously loaned from the family of another craftsman.

The museum's reception now has a feature about the Brightlingsea Neighbourhood Plan and a map made by children from the Brightlingsea Primary and Nursery School. From Easter until Christmas the museum, located in Station Road, will be open every Saturday from 10am until 4pm and Sundays from 2- 5pm. During June, July and August it will also be open on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons.

For more information  see www.brightlingseamuseum.co.uk.

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