More artworks and artefacts from Swindon’s history than ever before will be available to visitors to the borough’s gallery and museum when it opens, councillors will hear.

The borough council’s cabinet member for heritage, art and culture Councillor Marina Strinkovsky will face questioning about her portfolio at Monday’s meeting.

And her report says the council’s museum and gallery, while closed for nearly four years, has been busy acquiring new art: “During 2023, Swindon Museum & Art Gallery has added over 260 items to its permanent collection, including: a wooden case containing small geological specimens, identified as part of the William Morris Collection; two large abstract paintings by Dee Ferris, acquired through the Contemporary Art Society; 38 items related to the COVID19 pandemic, including material from the Vaccination Centre at Steam Museum.

“These items, as with others already in our collections are available for researchers and will be available for display at Swindon Museum & Art Gallery as well as for loans to other suitable venues.”

And Cllr Strinkovsky’s report says that with a spring opening for the new museum and gallery on the upper floor of the Euclid Street Civic offices still anticipated, staff are already planning exhibitions.

The report reads: “The new facility will also feature three spacious temporary display galleries ready to receive exhibitions on subjects as diverse as “Hardy’s Wessex”, “Elisabeth Frink: A View from Within” and “Double Take” featuring existing works from the collections, alongside new works by artists and young people."