THE countdown to the town’s milestone 150th Royal May Day is officially on – and Knutsford Heritage Centre is leading the way with the celebrations.

May Day is the highlight of the town’s calendar and this year falls on Saturday May 3.

To mark the occasion the heritage centre is staging the ‘Knutsford’s Crowning Glory’ exhibition of costumes, crowns, memorabilia and memories connected with the 150 years May Day has been celebrated in the town.

“We have some fascinating exhibits including new pieces of memorabilia not seen before,” said Val Bryant, who is curating the exhibition.

“We’re so delighted with the response to our hunt for crowns worn by former May Queens and have so far been promised around 40.”

The crowns will be at the centre of a ‘Crowning Glory’ window display and competition and numerous town centre businesses have jumped on board the project.

Val added: “We have had a fantastic response with more than 25 retailers and businesses signed up already to take part. Knutsford will look positively regal.”

As well as running the window display and competition, the heritage centre will be hosting an in-house Crowning Glory exhibition from late March through to the end of June.

The centre is seeking the support of Knutsford businesses in helping cover the costs of staging the exhibition and promoting it across Cheshire and the North West.

"We have already received some sponsorship from Knutsford businesses but need more contributions to ensure we can make this exhibition a huge success," said Julie Tempest, whose company Blue Barnacles PR handles the PR and marketing for the centre on a voluntary basis.

"We are working hard towards making this a very special year for Knutsford with the heritage centre at the heart of the celebrations."