One of the most striking objects to be seen inside Lyme Regis Museum is the 18th century hand-powered fire engine, which has been a treasured exhibit ever since the Museum opened in 1921. Sadly, the fire engine never had much success in putting out fires, as can be seen from this photograph taken after its last attempted use in 1889. The fire engine, itself miraculously unharmed, is standing amid a scene of devastation under the wall in Broad Street opposite the Royal Lion Hotel.
The photograph comes from a fascinating new research paper about the Lyme Regis fire engine and the numerous great fires it witnessed. The paper was written by Richard Bull following a talk by Thea Hawksworth, and is the latest in the “History of Lyme Regis in Museum Objects” series. All the papers, including “The Fire Engine and Lyme’s Great Fires”, can be downloaded by clicking here.