After an extensive eighteen month redevelopment programme the Kent Museum of Freemasonry was reopened to the public on September 14th 2012
Using existing funds and a magnificent donation from an anonymous benefactor the doors were closed on June 3rd 2011 and the work of clearing the contents to safe storage commenced immediately.
An experienced team was assembled to carry out the redevelopment. Professional building consultant, Tony Taylor, oversaw the planning and construction. Curator and Librarian, Tony Periton, managed the safe removal storage and return of the vast collection of masonic artefacts, books and documents and is attending to its redisplay. Both Tonys worked closely with Vice President Charles Boxer to oversee the design and construction of the exhibition display area.
During the closure period two new appointments were made to spread the growing workload, namely Jeff Davis as Assistant Librarian and Sarah Blatter as Assistant Curator.
David Anning, the Treasurer of the Kent Masonic Library and Museum Trust kept a tight hold of the purse strings, as Financial Controller for the entire project. The electronic recording of all artefacts, books and documents continued under the guiding hand of John Andrews, the Secretary to the Trust, whilst Eddie baker, the Operations Manager, kept the back office running.
The first change that is evident to previous visitors is the striking new entrance from St Peter’s Place, which catches the eye of the thousands of passers-by who walk, cycle and drive past every week.
As well as a bigger library space and the new audio-visual displays designed to provide visitors with an overview of Freemasonry and its presence and history in Kent, the refurbishment included a timber-framed balcony creating a separate workspace for the curator and his team resulting in an enlarged exhibition display area and a small shop where souvenirs and masonic regalia can be purchased.