Home Places to visit Beamish Museum’s plea for tradespeople

Beamish Museum’s plea for tradespeople

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Join the team! Picture; Beamish Museum
Join the team! Picture; Beamish Museum

Jobs created by museum’s biggest expansion

Are you a highly-skilled and time-served construction worker? Then you have a chance to help make history as part of the £18 million expansion of Beamish Museum, in County Durham, including the building of a 1950s Town and coaching inn.

Tradespeople, including bricklayers, stonemasons, general labourers, joiners, electricians, and plumbers, are being asked to get in touch if they’d like to work on the Remaking Beamish project, the largest in the museum’s 48-year history.

Construction apprenticeships will also be created, with the chance to learn alongside skilled mentors.

Work is under way on the development, which will see 30 new exhibits added in a 1950s Town, 1950s Farm, and expansion of the Georgian Landscape, including a coaching inn, where visitors can stay overnight.

The current construction team. Picture; Beamish Museum
The current construction team. Picture; Beamish Museum

Four building sites

Up to 30 tradespeople will be working on four building sites at any one time and will be employed as part of the museum’s in-house Buildings Team.

Michelle Lagar, Remaking Beamish Project Officer (Skills), said: “We’re looking for qualified and experienced local tradespeople who would like the opportunity to work on this unique project.

“Our in-house Buildings Team have extensive experience in creating both historical and modern buildings but, to deliver a project of this size, we need to grow our construction capacity.

“We’re looking for flexible tradespeople with extensive experience of working on large multi-site building projects. We’d like to hear from people who have an eye for quality and attention to detail and are available for short and long-term contracts.

Groundbreaking ceremony - Beamish Museum director Richard Evans and HLF's Ivor Crowther
Groundbreaking ceremony for the expansion – Beamish Museum director Richard Evans and Heritage Lottery Fund’s Ivor Crowther

‘High-profile and exciting project’

“We are calling for expressions of interest from tradespeople who would like to join our trade register as directly employed labour and are confident they can meet the demands of working on this high-profile and exciting project.”

The Remaking Beamish project is expected to create nearly 100 new jobs and training opportunities, including up to 50 apprenticeships.

The 1950s Town will feature a cinema – being moved from Sunderland – community centre, homes, shops, cafe, bowling green and fish and chip shop.

Aged miners’ homes will provide a dedicated centre for older people, including those living with dementia. Artist Norman Cornish’s former home will be recreated, including the studio he donated to the museum.

Beamish Museum
Some of Norman Cornish’s paintings on display. Picture; Beamish Museum

Weardale farm to be rebuilt

Spain’s Field Farm, from Weardale, has been deconstructed and will be rebuilt at Beamish to tell the story of rural life in the 1950s.

The expansion of the 1820s Landscape will include a coaching inn where visitors can stay overnight, and a recreation of murdered Joe the Quilter’s cottage.

A trolleybus system and restored buses will transport visitors, while a Northern General bus depot will support Beamish’s work to pass on heritage engineering skills.

Expressions of interest in the construction jobs should be sent, with a CV and covering letter, to michellelagar@beamish.org.uk.

Beamish Museum
Former Ryhope Cinema owners Angela and Gary Hepple with Beamish director Richard Evans and staff in 1950s costumes. Picture; Beamish Museum

Award-winning attraction

Beamish, The Living Museum of the North is North East England’s most popular museum and paid-for visitor attraction.

It welcomed a record-breaking 750,406 visitors in 2016/17 and was named Large Visitor Attraction of the Year at the North East England Tourism Awards in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

For more information, visit www.beamish.org.uk.

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Mandy Watson is a freelance journalist and an incurable plantaholic. MandyCanUDigIt grew from the tiny seed of a Twitter account into the rainforest of information you see before you. Gardening columnist for the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail and editor of the Teesdale Mercury Magazine. Attracted by anything rebellious, exotic and nerdy, even after all these years. Passionate about northern England and gardens everywhere. Falls over a lot.

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