A petition to restore a South London council’s museum of the borough’s history has received over 1,000 signatures.

Greenwich Council has been asked to restore a “properly functioning” museum and archive service to the borough in a recent petition.

The council originally set up a museum for the borough’s history in 2003 by way of the Greenwich Heritage Centre, including a reading room for the council’s archives.

However, the service was moved out of its building in the Royal Arsenal in Woolwich in 2018 to allow for a new cultural hub, Woolwich Works, to open in its place.

News Shopper: Woolwich WorksWoolwich Works

The archive is now reportedly stored in Charlton and is available to access through enquiring with the Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust (RHGT), who took over the running of the museum in 2014.

The petition was started by Mary Mills, former Labour Councillor for Greenwich Peninsula, on behalf of the Greenwich Industrial History Society.

She said in the petition: “A local history archive should form part of the council’s strategy to fight disadvantage and, also by demonstrating the diversity of its past, enhance the offer to visitors for local economic advantage.

"It should also provide an educational facility where research skills can be learnt by all, from young children to elderly family historians.

"We urge Greenwich Council to restore a properly functioning archive and museum service to enable everyone to celebrate and research our heritage.”

A Greenwich Council spokesperson told the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) that the authority works closely with the RHGT to allow access to heritage material and exploring options for a new public reading room.

They added that 77 researchers use the archive through the trust each month.

They said: “In 2018, the borough’s archives and collections were relocated from Woolwich to a new purpose-built site in Charlton, fitted to the highest standards of care and management.

"For the first time in their 100-year history, Royal Greenwich’s collections and archive are now housed together.”

They added: “Woolwich Works’ restoration rescued the buildings from being on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register and the venue has since become a cultural hub for our borough.

"A number of local, national and internationally-acclaimed resident artistic companies now call the Woolwich Works cultural district home including Punchdrunk, the Acosta Dance Foundation and the National Youth Jazz Orchestra.”

An RHGT spokesperson told the LDRS: “In 2018, the Heritage Centre closed. The council then provided an environmentally controlled facility on Charlton Riverside to contain the archive.

"RGHT continues to offer a service through the archivist and team of volunteers, who enable researchers to access the borough’s archive via our enquiry service.

"The trust is regularly in discussions about potential services, including a reading room for archive materials and intends to continue to consult with community organisations on these options.”