VISITOR numbers to Colchester Castle grew by more than 7 per cent thanks to its first exhibition in five years.

The museum’s Adorn: Jewellery, The Human Story opened at the end of July, marking the first temporary exhibition the venue has hosted since its refurbishment in 2014.

And the relaunch of the castle’s exhibition space has been hailed a big success.

It has been revealed 23,621 people visited between September and December compared to 21,976 during the same period the year before. This is an increase of roughly 7.5 per cent.

Adorn has now entered its final month and senior curator Glynn Davis said visitors seemed to have been delighted by the more than 300 objects, some of which are thousands of years old.

“We have seen a rise in visitor numbers which is good news for Colchester,” he said.

“With something like this there are so many people involved in the exhibition and we spent a couple of years building up to it.

“Once exhibitions are over you can never go to them again, that is part of their charm.

“Some of the items will go back to storage and some will go in display again.

“I am really pleased and proud with what we have produced. People have really taken to it.”

Mr Davis said now exhibitions are back up and running again at the castle, there will be a much shorter wait between Adorn and the next one.

Planning has already begun Mr Davis expects the next show to be even more popular.

He said: “We are really going back to our core content of the Romans and picking up a bit of Roman Colchester which is going to really excite people. It should be opening in late spring next year.

“The Romans are in the collective consciousness of Colchester and this new exhibition will have to hit the nail on the head.”

He added: “Adorn was more difficult because we didn’t have a regular programme.

“I am really excited now we have started exhibitions again and we are going to keep building on that.”

Adorn runs until February 16 at Colchester Castle.