The Weathervane on the bell tower of the Market House Museum in Watchet has been restored as part of the museums 40th Anniversary celebrations.
The wrought iron and copper weathervane has been a feature of the Watchet rooftops for over 32 years. However both time and exposure to the sea air had taken its toll on the weathervane damaging the cooper sailing boat and corroding the metalwork.
West Country Blacksmiths were commissioned to undertake the weathervane restoration by the Watchet Market Museum Committee who fully funded the restoration work.
The craftsmen removed the weathervane for a short period to allow the ship’s sails to be replaced and remaining copper work to be cleaned and repaired. The smiths also restored the mainframe of the weathervane by removed over 30 years of rust and paint from the metalwork, reforging missing and damaged components and weld repairing where required.
Once the repairs were completed the blacksmiths galvanized and heritage black painted the brackets and repatinated the copper top.
The weathervane was reinstalled by the blacksmiths in October 2019 and is hoped to be there for many more years to come.
The weathervane is owned by the museum and was installed first in the bell tower in 1987, replacing a plain one which is now displayed on the lighthouse in the harbour.
About the Market House Museum
Watchet Market House Museum first opened in 1979, in the ground floor of the Market House. The building was built in 1820 and is owned by the Wyndham Estate. The museum focuses on Watchet history, it is richness and variety reflected in the exhibits.From pre history, with a good fossil collection, through the ages, stone age, bronze and iron age, romano-british to the present day. A port of over 1000 years,Watchet had an important maritime history, particularly 19th & 20th century and has a good collection of artefacts and marine art celebrating this.
The town’s social history is well recorded with superb photographic collection. Although small, the museum is fully accredited and welcomes around 30,000 visitors a season. The museum opens between 1030- 1630 hrs daily, from the end of March until the beginning of November.
They are always welcome new members and volunteer stewards to join. If you are interested please call 01984 631660.