IT is now almost 30 years since a massive community effort started to convert an old spice warehouse at Ulverston into a heritage centre and museum.

After a flurry of fundraising events, the first section of the Ulverston Heritage Centre was opened by mayor,Cllr Val Miller, in September 1990.

To begin with there was a shop and a centre for craft work while plans were drawn up on how to renovate the three-storey building -  which was set in a secluded courtyard and was thought to have once belonged to a sea captain.

Supporters aimed to raise £50,000 to restore the historic building at Lower Brook Street to house pieces of the town’s history.

Some of that money came from the sale of books after thousands of them were donated to the group.

Among the more unusual events held to boost funds was a Palm Court Tea Room held at the Coronation Hall.

The Mail on December 1 in 1992,noted: “Hundreds attended the event at which heritage members dressed up in Victorian and Edwardian costume to serve and wait on customers.”

The Mail, on July 15 in 1992,noted: “A collection of antique artefacts, documents, books, photographs,records and clothing collected by historians in Ulverston goes on show when the town’s heritage centre holds its first exhibition.

“The exhibition, due to be staged in a converted ground floor display room of an 18th century warehouse,should provide a fascinating insight into what life was like ion bygone Ulverston.

“The exhibition will be the culmination of a 10-year dream for a band of dedicated people determined to preserve as much of the heritage of Ulverston as possible.

“The willing band aims to make the heritage centre a focal point for local people to concentrate efforts collecting and displaying items, particularly to tourists and schoolchildren.”