Jayne Robb recently became the re-launched Grantham Museum’s general manager, having been appointed to the role by Grantham Community Heritage Association.
You have been involved with Grantham Community Heritage Association for some time... but how did you come to be the general manager?
Jayne: First of all, I want to reassure the people of Grantham I’m here for the long game - for as long as the people of Grantham want me here.
The reason I stepped forward was because the board wanted someone who knew the project intimately and it seemed logical for someone already on the board step forward.
How will having a paid general manager position help the museum?
Although it is a financial commitment from the board, part of my remit is also to pursue funding.
When we are appealing for funding one of the things they are asking for is a general manager so they can make sure the project is being managed.
The investment also means, although it’s only a part-time position, we can have someone here everyday.
The museum had great success with encouraging volunteers but how can people support the museum now?
Everyone that comes through the door - just by setting foot in the building - is supporting and helping the museum. Every visit is recorded and that effects our funding.
The more popular we prove we are the more likely we are to get funding so if you can do no more than pop through the door and have a look, you have helped save the museum.
How important is the success of the museum?
There’s no Plan B. If it closes and it’s gone then it’s gone forever and Grantham’s history will remain in boxes. We’ll probably just end up with a sin glass box in Lincoln marked “Grantham” with Margaret Thatcher’s shoes and an apple inside.
That’s how important it is.
Too much has closed in this town and the less we have to draw people into town - that effects all of us. We are not just saving the museum for the sake of the museum, we are part of “Team Grantham”.
We have to be part of the team that breathes life into Grantham. We need to keep building Grantham up and we can be an important part of that.
The museum is currently open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Do you hope to increase opening hours?
We’re going to increase our opening hours after the winter break when it’s cheaper to heat the building but we’re also going to be opening for school trips and by appointment.
As soon as winter finishes we are going to add one more day, if not more. Eventually, we want to be open seven days a week. That’s my target.
Are there any exciting exhibitions in the pipeline?
We are planning an exhibition in March to mark 20 years since the closure BMARC. If anyone has anything we could use, then please bring it to the museum.
Every month we want to be celebrating Grantham.