Step into a different era and make yourself at home. You are surrounded by what is familiar and yet unfamiliar; ordinary and yet extraordinary. This is Mrs Smith’s home where her unique presence is felt in every authentic object, as if she has just stepped out for a moment. This is the story of one woman, in one home, through one century.
Mrs Smith was well known and well-loved in Navenby where she lived until she was 102. Her cottage provides a rare insight into the life of a rural Lincolnshire community through an entire century. The contents and appearance have been preserved from when Hilda Smith last lived there in 1995. She knew all the local history, families and secrets and kept a diary every day. You can explore and reveal layers of a unique story.
Between September 2016 and July 2020 a renovation project saw Mrs Smith’s Cottage brought back into use as a popular heritage attraction. The museum had been closed in 2012 when serious structural issues and deterioration of the building became apparent. The project included urgent repairs and conservation work, reinterpretation of the site, a new learning programme and range of events and activities; restoring the Cottage to its place at the heart of the local community and ensuring its vital contribution to the visitor economy, whilst providing an enjoyable, engaging visitor experience.