Lamps shining again in Chatteris thanks to bright idea

Cllr Julie Smith,Chatteris Mayor Bill Haggata and  Chris Howes with newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum
Cllr Julie Smith,Chatteris Mayor Bill Haggata and Chris Howes with newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum

Two of the last remaining gas lamp posts in Chatteris have been rescued, restored to their former glory and are now standing proudly outside the Chatteris Town Council Chambers and Museum in Church Lane.

The lamps are over 100 years old and were formerly located in Wood Street where they were part of the gas lighting system for the town.

Cllr Julie Smith,Chatteris Mayor Bill Haggata and  Chris Howes with newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum 
The newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum

Cllr Julie Smith,Chatteris Mayor Bill Haggata and Chris Howes with newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum The newly restored gas lamps outside Chatteris museum

The move to save the two original gas lamps was led by Coun Julie Smith following the county council’s decision to replace the posts with energy efficient lights in 2015.

Former councillor Chris Howes drew up plans to show how the lamps could be used as part of a new sign to help attract visitors to the museum and to improve the look of the 1970’s building.

Architect Chris Davis was appointed by the town council to take the project forward.

Artistica Metallica, of March, lovingly restored the lamps and created the name sign between them.

The groundworks were carried out by Chatteris firm Ernie Payne and Sons and the electrical work by local electrician Gary James. Grant money to finance the project was donated by Chatteris Court Leet Estate, the Red Tile Wind Farm Trust, Honeysome Road Solar Ltd, Chatteris Museum from a Tesco grant and Chatteris Town Council.

Stainless Metalcraft Ltd have agreed to manufacture planters to help protect the lamps.

The lamps were officially unveiled at a ceremony hosted by the mayor Bill Haggata on Monday.

An information board giving brief details of the scheme is on the outer wall of the council chambers/museum while information on the history of gas lighting in Chatteris is available to view in the museum.

To see the lamps pop along to the museum on Christmas Lights switch-on night (see page 29), or visit when the museum is open on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons and Saturday mornings.