THE mysteries of Ancient Egypt are close to being unlocked in Bolton.

Bolton Museum's multi-million Egyptology gallery will be unveiled next month to showcase its Egyptian treasures in all their glory.

Bolton's Egypt will officially welcome people to step back into the land of the Pharoahs on September 22, where they can enter the burial chamber of Thutmose III, of which a full size reproduction has been created.

The Leader of Bolton Council, Cllr Linda Thomas, said: "Bolton’s Egypt is a wonderful showcase of our nationally important artefacts and the museum is renowned for its extensive Egyptology collection.

“This will be a major tourism attraction for Greater Manchester and the North West which will attract national acclaim, enhance our visitor numbers and further boost business in the town

"As the Culture Lead for the Greater Manchester Combined Authority I am proud that as a town Bolton is helping to put us on the map as a region of great cultural activity."

The new gallery will show some of the 15,000 ancient Egyptian artefacts in Bolton collection, including the oldest sample of mummification in the world ­— and explore Bolton's link with Ancient Egypt and life, particularly the afterlife, during this period which continues to fascinate today.

Bolton’s collection is one of the most significant ancient Egyptian collections in the UK.

A local mill owner’s daughter, Annie Barlow, was a member of the Egypt Exploration Society in the 19th Century and helped to raise funds for excavations in Egypt. The Egypt Exploration Society donated numerous finds to the Chadwick Museum ­— the Victorian forerunner for Bolton Museum.

As part of the transformation of the museum, a new ‘Bolton’s Nature’ gallery has also been created which, as well as objects from the natural history collection, will include new animals such as a huge brown bear from Manchester Museum.

The museum’s collection of paintings, sculptures, statues and other artworks will now also be on display in a new gallery called Bolton’s Art.

The museum has been closed since December 2016 and to mark its reopening, people are invited to enjoy tours of the new museum, storytelling, craft activities, glitter tattoos and facepainting, photo booths, badge and keyring making and lots more to celebrate its reopening.

The £3.8 million scheme has been funded from one off capital funding by the council, a contribution from Eddie Davies and a grant from the DCMS/Wolfson Museums and Galleries Improvement Fund