As the country plunges itself into festive merriment, fantastic food, meeting family or friends and work for some starts to wind up, it was time for the Fire Museum volunteers to have their last weekend together at Scunthorpe before locking up for the last time in 2021. The day itself was an incredibly cold affair with freezing fog and a light misty rain but the team kept in good spirits and continued on with the various projects in and around Scunthorpe.

That meant that the Hose Cart – or Ed and Barry’s Sleigh – got another coat of paint on its wheels which has concluded the main painting effort which is a great achievement. Just the other minor details to go. Inventory work continued apace. The volunteers also caught up with a few outstanding admin points and changes to policies which will be implemented in 2022. The library work also continued but the main achievement of the day was the fitment of a new key sensor ring to the Transit which has solved the immobiliser issue. A cheap replacement part and thankfully not a lengthy trip to the garage.

With the light drawing in and temperature dropping, the only thing left to do was to reflect on what has been an incredibly difficult year of highs and lows for the Museum and the rest of the country. 2021 started with a lock stock and barrel move into storage and the real threat of closure and loss of the Museum. Thankfully it was saved through the incredible generosity of a business, a couple of anonymous land owners, a few logistics companies – including long term supporters, L & K.R Thorpe Transport  – and yet another herculean effort from the Museum staff and the van which needed some attention

So the Museum was again in crisis but thankfully the volunteers rose up to the challenge and we started the restoration of the Bedford Water Bowser. The Museum also saved the Fordson WOT-1A 45 Monitor, which was nearly sold overseas, with the help of our generous supporters. Access Lincs Ltd allowed us to unveil the new acquisition at Lincs Fest which was a great way to show off our latest addition to the fleet.

The Mobile Display Unit also got its first outings to attend Digby Day and the IBCC Wings and Wheels event which showcased the new partnership and the plans for our exciting future with Scampton Holdings Ltd. We’ve also attended a few other shows with the vehicles like the Sandtoft Trolleybus Museum Blues and Twos Event and the Classic Landrover Gathering at Skillington, where one of our Vehicles won best military vehicle at the show.

Thankfully, the Museum has been able to rely on our HQ at Scunthorpe to be a place of stability and storage through the kind support of Origin Packaging Ltd. Having this facility has enabled us to store some of our more fragile and perishable exhibits and somewhere we can host volunteer meetings on the weekends. The volunteers make the museum and the collection would be lost without their efforts during the weekends. We unfortunately had to say our fond farewells to two of our long standing members this year, Jim and Dave, and we hope their friends and families take comfort that we still fondly share their memories and stories on the weekends.

Thanks must also go to RAF Digby who raised £166 for the use of the Museum’s Mk10 during their Santa event on base last week. It was well attended and certainly raised some smiles across the base from observers young and old.

Finally, thank you to all of our supporters who follow our activity online and through social media. It’s always great sharing our news, vehicles and other activity and getting the positive support whilst at shows and we will depend on this continued kindness and generosity to secure the Museum for the future. Merry Christmas and best wishes for all in 2022.

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