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Glimpse inside the modern new cafe in Betteshanger Park as the site prepares to open a new £1.7m mining museum

A modern cafe and a series of workshops are part of the package as Betteshanger Park prepares to unveil its new mining museum.

After years of anticipation, the doors to the £1.7million Kent Mining Museum, housed in a brand new £6million visitor center in Deal, will open this Saturday.

Inside The Lamp Room, Betteshanger Park’s new cafe

Celebrations starting at 1 p.m. will include a parade of schoolchildren, tours, speeches and music from the Betts Band and the Snowdown Choir.

The free attraction is the first such facility in the county, telling the unique story of mining communities and the former Betteshanger Coal Mine.

In addition to the interactive displays, families are also invited to participate in free activities such as crafts, creating safety lights, pit checks and snap tins.

The festivities continue during the Easter holidays with a series of workshops.

These are all free but booking is advised at:

The Kent Mining Museum opens this Saturday
The Kent Mining Museum opens this Saturday

Theater workshops with Storytales Theater are offered, as well as poetry lessons with Leo Boix.

Children can ‘meet a minor’ during five sessions offered or take part in a photo walk with Elliot Masters.

The venue is also launching a new cafe The Lamp Room, a modern space offering food for all ages.

Kent Mining Heritage Foundation (KMHF) Chairman Stuart Elgar said: “We are extremely proud to tell the story of Kent Coalfield and those who lived and worked there.

“This museum is not a nostalgic trip for elderly miners or their children – it’s for our grandchildren and future generations.

Inside the new Kent Mining Museum which opens on April 2
Inside the new Kent Mining Museum which opens on April 2
Miners at Betteshanger Colliery.  Picture: BBC
Miners at Betteshanger Colliery. Picture: BBC

“The story of the approximately 5,000 migrant miners is unique in UK coalfields, and it is important that it is kept alive.”

The museum and its staff were funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, with additional support from Quinn Estates.