OPTIMISM is growing that more large-scale investment will happen in Trowbridge after the town’s museum received a £1.1m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

After more than two years of planning and waiting, celebrations broke out at Trowbridge Museum as its £2.4m expansion plans, called Onwards and Upwards, received a huge cash boost on Wednesday.

The money will help to pay for a new lift, upgraded displays, new learning and outreach facilities, a library and research facility and interactive zones at the site in The Shires shopping centre.

Now museum curator Clare Lyall believes that more investment could pour into Trowbridge on the back of this grant.

“This is one of the most exciting projects the town has had in years. Hopefully it will be all done by May 2020,” she said.

“I hope that this can be the catalyst for more investment across the town. Trowbridge is a place of historic value and I am optimistic this can be the springboard for more investment in the county town.

“This exciting project will ensure that 1,000 years of textile heritage is accessible to many more people locally and regionally and will continue to be for many years to come.”

Councillor Edward Kirk said: “This is great news. This puts Trowbridge back on the map and shows that the town is well worth investing in.

“It can raise the profile of the place and that can hopefully attract others to follow suit.”

Home Mill, where the museum is based, was Trowbridge’s last working woollen cloth mill, ceasing to operate in 1982 and has been home to the museum since July 1990.

A digital app will be created to interpret the numerous textile buildings in the town as well.