Mutiny planned as museum gets set to close for refurbishment

The Cromwell Museum in Huntingdon

The Cromwell Museum in Huntingdon - Credit: Archant

The Cromwell Museum will be going out with a bang when it closes for a £160,000 refurbishment scheme at the end of September.

The Cromwell Museum, in Huntingdon

The Cromwell Museum, in Huntingdon - Credit: Archant

It will mark the closure with the recreation of an encampment of Parliamentarian soldiers from the Sealed Knot re-enactment group in the grounds of All Saints Church and dramatised performances of a Leveller mutiny.

The museum closes its doors to the public on September 29 for the upgrade, funded by a number of grants, which is expected to take four months to complete.

Celebrations to mark the upgrade take place on September 28, with dramatisations of the Leveller mutiny in the church at 11.30am and 2.30pm. Admission to the performances is £5 with and can be obtained online at:, in person at the Cromwell Museum or on the door. The living history camp will be open from 10am-4pm and is free.

Stuart Orme, Cromwell Museum curator, said: "We're working very hard on the museum's refurbishment at present, which will highlight our remarkable collections as well as create a space that is more welcoming to visitors.

"This event in association with our friends in the Sealed Knot will help celebrate our refurbishment and help raise some additional funds towards the works."

The museum is expected to reopen by the beginning of March and in the meantime a temporary exhibition from its collection will be at the Town Hall from the end of October.

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A new display will be created during the upgrade, highlighting its internationally-important collections and telling the story of Oliver Cromwell in a more engaging way.

The Levellers were a radical movement which grew out of the English Civil War and called for regular parliaments, universal male suffrage, religious tolerance and equality before the law.

Many of the Levellers were part of Parliament's New Model Army and in May 1649 staged a mutiny to try to get their demands heard. They were surprised by Cromwell at Burford in Oxfordshire and the story of what happened will be told during the re-enactments with the aid of Colonel John Pickering's Regiment of the Sealed Knot.