Rustington Museum is turning a page in its history as it merges with other services to form a new community centre.
The museum and The Garden Room will be moving from Church Farm Cottage in The Street, Rustington, to the former WRVS Building in the car park behind Waitrose in Broadmark Lane, where they will merge with the Rustington Village Information Centre, currently in the Churchill Car Park.
Rustington Parish Council chairman Jamie Bennett said the move would mean a ‘bigger venue, better location for a cheaper cost’: “It is a great opportunity for us to keep services the council currently has but at a cheaper cost to the taxpayer.
“In the current climate, it is fantastic to be able to keep services rather than to make cuts.”
Mr Bennett said the benefits to the museum would be expanded opening hours, larger floorspace and car parking – something the current premises lacks.
The council will sell the museum premises, and the move will take place once major renovations on the new building are completed. It is expected to open early next year.
None of the museum or information centre staff will lose their jobs in the move, the council said.
The parish council was approached by Store Property Investments which owns the building a few months ago as it was keen for the building to be used by the community.
Sarah Wickens from Store Property Investments said: “We are delighted that this building which is in such a central location within the village, can be brought back into use for the benefit of the community which is what it was always intended for.”
The new community centre will also provide an additional private hiring facility and garden. The final proceeds from the sale of the old premises are planned to be used for future projects, and savings made by the move will contribute to the council’s running costs.