THE story of legendary smuggler John Andrew of Saltburn is being told once again in a well-loved museum.

The Saltburn Smugglers museum opened its doors to customers for the season last week and has already been inundated with tourists fascinated by the long history of smuggling in the area.

Many of the adults are particularly pleased the museum adjoins the pub John Andrew ran, The Ship Inn.

Jackie Hill, museum manager, said John Andrew came to Saltburn from Scotland in about 1780 and travelled to Holland, France and Geneva to smuggle any number of goods to the Tees. However, there was little doubt that the pub landlord had a ready market for all kinds of alcohol.

Eventually, after years of smuggling on an epic scale, he was caught and sent to jail in York.

But his many well-placed contacts earned him a pardon and he resumed, at least outwardly, a law-abiding life from then on.

This is the 11th year the museum has been open and last summer it welcomed its 250,000th visitor. This year it will be open seven days a week from 10am to 6pm until September 30.

A total of 16,700 visitors toured the Smugglers last year. The Smugglers also gained the English Tourism Council's Quality Assured Visitor Attraction award.

The museum features a three-room experience, including interactive characters.

Jackie Hill said: "We think the museum is a little gem. We have a lot of repeat visitors and it's always nice to see people who've come year after year - they're like old friends."

Admission is £1.95 for adults and £1.45 for children. A family ticket costs £5.60.

Call the Smugglers on (01287) 625252 for more information.