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December 2004
National Motorcycle Museum reopens
Some of the destroyed motorcycles
Some of the destroyed motorcycles
After a £20m rebuild, the National Motorcycle Museum reopens its doors.

See our photo galleries below.
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Local Events Index

Fire-ravaged bike museum reopens -
From BBC News

National Motorcycle Museum


£14 million bill for motorcycle museum blaze

Click here to see our 2003 photo gallery

Click here to see our second 2003 photo gallery
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The National Motorcycle Museum – hit by a devastating fire which tore through the complex a little more than a year ago – will re-open on 1st December.

One of the many displays on offer
One of the many displays on show
For just over 15 months staff and contractors at the museum have worked flat out on the £20m restoration.

This has included restoring many of the museum's facilities and world famous bikes, and the installation of a £1.2m state-of-the art sprinkler system.

The museum has long been recognised as the largest and finest of its kind in the world, and before the fire attracted around 250,000 visitors per year. The owners believe the new offering will be even more attractive to enthusiasts.

Development manager at the museum, Nick Hartland, said: "We were devastated when the fire hit us, but the owner Roy Richards vowed we'd be back, and he was right."

See some of the motorcycles at the National Motorcycle Museum below:

Photo Gallery One
Photo Gallery Two
Photo Gallery Three

The museum first opened its doors in 1984, and many machines at the venue are fully restored to the original specifications.

A New York Police bike
A New York Police bike
The fire was started by a carelessly discarded cigarette end – the blaze then took hold rapidly. The fire brigade put up fire breaks but the 120 firefighters who attended could only limit the damage. Fortunately, however, no one was injured but the damage was widespread.

Mr Hartland added: "When we open on December 1st, we will have around 650 machines, and we are currently restoring at the rate of about one per month. Our aim is to increase the number of bikes to around 800 by 2007."

See our photo galleries following the fire at the National Motorcycle Museum last year.
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