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9 July 2021,

Volunteer, Ray Stephens had the opportunity to visit the museum during the object move and here's his account of his time at the Hull Maritime Museum.

I've had the privilege of visiting the Maritime Museum again recently and seen how bereft it is of its many treasures, with empty display cabinets and bare walls. Sad as it is looking, it has also offered me the opportunity to visit parts of the building not normally open to the public or to us volunteers.

Take for instance, the top floor, which looking from outside of the museum is the one with all the distinctive porthole windows. This floor will be open to the public, after the renovations, with a range of different activities.

What a pleasure it was to be able to stand underneath the museum's domes, where the plan is for one of them to become something like a small planetarium and interactively demonstrate how it is possible to navigate by using the stars.

The dome will offer views across the city

Whilst one of the other domes will have a staircase leading up to offer a viewing platform over Queen Victoria Square and Hull. Exciting!

In the one of the rooms on this floor can be found items waiting to be returned to the Spurn Lightship.

Artefacts from the Spurn Lightship

Or a box of tools donated by the family of a Hull man who was a collector. These tools were used in the past by workers at Hull's docks and some of them are engraved with the user's name. These will be on display when the museum re-opens.

But for me the highlight of the third floor was the unique view from one of the porthole windows.

Just stunning!

A porthole on the third floor of the museum

From the third floor we were then able to go to the basement where many items, not on display, are stored. Another area we are nor normally able to visit.

There a small treasure trove!

The basement - a small treasure trove of artefacts

What a special visit this turned out to be with an unexpected surprise access to some of the museum's inner sanctums!