Plans to create a more community feel at a rescue team’s base and museum has received financial support.
An initial application to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to improve the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade (TVLB)watch house and museum has been successful.
It means that both the TVLB and North Tyneside Council will be able to use the £23,000 funding to progress plans to apply for a full grant at a later date.
The overall project aims to carry out repairs to the Grade-II listed Spanish Battery headquarters in Tynemouth, making the facility accessible to everyone and creating a new education space.
And there will also be a blueprint for safeguarding the future of the historic building with essential structural work.
Coun Eddie Darke, cabinet member for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “The TVLB building is part of our heritage and therefore it is essential that we help the organisation rescue it for future generations.”
A stage two bid will be submitted to HLF later in the year.
The TVLB was founded almost 150 years ago, with its museum displaying artefacts from old shipwrecks, chronicling the history of lifesaving off the north east coast.
TVLB captain Peter Lilley said: “The TVLB is truly delighted at the news that we have received stage one approval.
“Restoring and securing the future of our Watch House Museum is a key aim of the brigade and it is something that we have been working towards for many years.
“Although much hard work still lies ahead, we are hopeful that our dream of seeing the building back to its former glory, and updated will be achieved in the not-too-distant future.”
Anyone wishing to find out further information on the restoration project can do so by ‘liking’ the Facebook page ‘Restore the Watch House’ or by visiting www.tvlb.org