Port Greville museum sailing ahead with expansion
PORT GREVILLE - Although most of the expansion work won't begin until fall, the Age of Sail Heritage Centre's conceptual expansion plan is coming together. "The plans are currently in the hands of Tom Young, the architect in charge of the project, getting the final details worked out," museum curator Oralee O'Byrne said. At the moment the museum is having a boat house that will house a 20-foot gaft rigg wooden boat that was built in Parrsboro in 1976. The boat itself was donated to the museum by John Fudge and the boat house is being built by local resident Brian Field and additional volunteers within the community. Field, who began sawing the lumber at his portable sawmill located at his residence in Port Greville on May 25, now has enough milled lumber to complete the 16 ft by 24 ft. "Layton Yorke donated the logs for the project while a company out of Truro (Stella Jones) donated timbers ($700-$800 worth) for the project," Field said. After cutting, hauling and processing the lumber for the project, Field said once the site is prepared he expects the building itself to take about a week to complete providing there is enough hands-on volunteers. The completion of the boat house is a small part of the overall conceptual plan for the museum. The museum curator explained the overall expansion project will span out over three years and will include the new addition to the museum itself looking as though you are standing in the belly of a ship. "We're hoping to have the basement which will consist of a research area, community meeting and workshop area and provide storage space by the end of 2009," O'Byrne said adding they were hoping to make the museum solar and wind powered therefore generating their own electricity for the museum. Last year, a provincial archeologist dedicated the museum site as an archeological site because of three wooden slip ways (boat launch) discovered at the rear of the museum's property. "The archeologist said the slip ways where the best preserved slip ways he had seen and were so because of the swamp (bog) they are embedded in," O'Byrne said. Part of the overall concept is to have landscaped walking trails around the property and O'Byrne said as work is being completed around the museum the contractors were going to incorporate the renovation work as part of the museum's charm. "The plan is to have as much of the wood working that will be happening as authentic as we possibly can," the museum curator said.