A NEW museum commemorating the RMS Titanic is hoping to attract around 100,000 visitors in the run up to the centenary of when the ship sank.
Maritime enthusiast Nigel Hampson, 42, has brought the Titanic and her maiden voyage to life as he opened the Titanic in Lancashire Museum, in the old Colne Grammar School, off Albert Road, Colne on Wednesday.
Nigel, of Humphrey Street, Brierfield is hoping to attract visitors from around the world with his display remembering the 71 Lancashire people who were on board the doomed vessel - including Wallace Hartley, the ship’s famous band leader from Colne.
Next year marks 100 years since the ship sank and Nigel and his team are planning a series of events in conjunction with Pendle Council to help boost tourism in the town.
Nigel, a founder member of the British Titanic Society, said: “The centenary will be a massive deal for us and we are going to try and make the most of the opportunity.
“We will be working in conjunction with the council and so far we have a two week, giant exhibition in Colne Municipal Hall, a series of concerts and a number of themed events planned.
“A lot of our plans are still at the early stages but we know we will be unveiling a lasting memorial to Wallace Hartley in the museum.“I hope to attract thousands and thousands of visitors from all over the world. Many Titanic enthusiasts do visit Colne but apart from Wallace Hartley’s memorial and grave there isn’t much to do.
“We want people to think of us in the same way they do of the museums in Southampton and Belfast.”
The museum tells the story of the Titanic through models, photographs and documentary films and visitors can even look at fittings identical to those seen on the Titanic – from its sister ship the RMS Olympic.
The museum is open six days a week, from 10am until 6pm and entry costs £2 for adults and £1 for children.