Cookworthy Museum pit stop for celebrating a 100th birthday

27th April 2017  |  12:00am

Cookworthy Museum pit stop for celebrating a 100th birthday

Blue Force Chairman Philip Gibson and Treasurer Peter Plehov, who are on their 6-week Coastline Tractor Challenge following the coasts of England, Wales, Scotland and part of Ireland, stopped in Kingsbridge recently to visit the Cookworthy Museum.

The two Ford tractor enthusiasts have a lifelong interest in any type of vehicle related to Ford, Fordson and New Holland, including County, Doe, Muir-Hill, Roadless and other conversions as well as industrial and commercial vehicles.

So, they were very keen to see the machinery displays at our local venue. They were shown around the galleries and Heritage Resource Centre by Holly Trubshawe the Museum Curator and Prunella Martin, Director and Head of Prime Waterfront & Country House department at Marchand Petit, one of the sponsors for the Coastline Tractor Challenge.

Phil commented: “The Blue Force Club is very much about heritage and technology working together, so it was interesting to see and compare the agricultural machinery, tools and local archive history cleverly displayed at the Cookworthy Museum.”

The vintage collection from bygone eras is just part of the fascinating facilities at the town’s centrally located museum, housed in what was the former Kingsbridge Grammar School buildings.

The Museum was named after William Cookworthy, who was born in the town and developed the first true hard-paste porcelain (“china”).  The museum was opened in 1972 thanks to the endeavours of Mrs Evelyn Northcott who persuaded English China Clays Ltd to rescue the derelict building and found a museum to collect and record the social history of the area. 

The Coastal Tractor Challenge, that Phil and Peter are undertaking on two custom made New Holland T6 tractors, is to celebrate the 100 years of tractor production started by Henry Ford and a fund raising exercise for Steps Care Centre and Cancer Research UK.

 Prunella observed: “Anything that promotes agriculture and good causes at the same time is worth supporting especially in rural communities”, she went on to add “the Cookworthy Museum is a great asset to Kingsbridge in promoting and supporting local education and tourism alike.  With plant sales, coffee mornings and children’s craft activities regularly being held in the historical buildings and charming walled garden. Great to have such a meeting place on our local doorstep with such regional and national appeal.”

So, visit the new exhibition - ‘William Cookworthy: Pioneer of Porcelain’ or visit www.kingsbridgemuseum.org.uk .  To follow or donate to Coastline Tractor Challenge www.justgiving.com/CoastlineTractorChallenge www.marchandpetit.co.uk.  For further information contact Marchand Petit 01548 857588.