history museums in Cambridgeshire
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Cambridgeshire Museums & Galleries

including civic and independent art galleries and museums in Cambridgeshire...

Museums long ago ceased to be stuffy rooms full of glass cases containing bits of old pottery and fossilised bones. Today even most conventional museums include changing displays but over recent years there has been a growth in industrial and "living" museums. Here you can learn about local heritage, get a feel for how people lived and worked, the hardships they endured...

Galleries listed include not just civic galleries displaying publicly owned artworks, but also privately owned galleries with items for sale.

Cambridgeshire Museums and Galleries

blank tabWISBECH & FENLAND MUSEUMMuseums & Galleries
Museum Square, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 1ES
Establishment Photo
Wisbech and Fenland Museum is one of the Fens greatest hidden treasures. One of the oldest purpose built Museums in the country.

It has kept all the charm and atmosphere of its original Victorian design. Visitors can explore displays of porcelain, ancient Egyptian tomb treasures, rare rocks and crystals, coins and bygones from our grandparents time.

See the story of Thomas Clarkson the slavery abolitionists.

We also have treasures of national importance, including the manuscript of Charles Dickens's Great Expectations, Napoleon's breakfast service captured at Waterloo and Louis XIV's ivory chess set.

Admission is free. Donations are very welcome!
Tel: 01945 583817
E-mail: info@wisbechmuseum.org.uk
See our website

Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1RB

Magnificent collections spanning centuries and civilisations including antiquities from Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome; sculpture, furniture, armour, ceramics; manuscripts, coins and medals, paintings, drawings and prints. Caf, shop, exhibitions and events programme. ADMISSION FREE.
Tel: 01223 332900See our website

blank tabIWM DUXFORDMuseums & Galleries
Imperial War Museum, Duxford, Cambridgeshire, CB22 4QR
Located on the site of a famous former First and Second World War airfield, IWM Duxford provides the public with access to over two hundred world famous iconic aircraft.

Award-winning interactive exhibitions. IWM Duxford also host a collection of tanks, military vehicles and boats.

Further attractions include the Battle of Britain exhibition and the American Air Museum, whilst AirSpace, the story of British and Commonwealth aviation includes a Spitfire, Lancaster and the fastest-ever Concorde.
Tel: 01223 835000See our website

blank tabRAMSEY RURAL MUSEUMMuseums & Galleries
The Woodyard, Wood Lane, Ramsey, Huntingdon, Cambs, PE26 2XD

The Museum is housed in 17th Century farm buildings and various barns set in open countryside. A wide variety of agricultural machinery, cobblers shop, chemists, blacksmiths, Victorian bedroom, kitchen schoolroom, local and family history archive and much, much more with facilities for the disabled. Tea Room / Museum Shop Open: Thursday 10-5pm, Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday from 2-5pm. Other times by appointment. Family Ticket: £12.00, Adult: £4.50, Concession: £4.00, Children: £2.50, Children under 5 FREE!
Tel: 01487 815715
E-mail: ramseyruralmuseum@live.com
See our website

Kettle's Yard Museum

Castle St, Cambridge, CB3 0AQ
Tel: 01223 748100    Fax: 01223 324377
E-mail: mail@kettlesyard.cam.ac.uk

Kettle's Yard is the former home of Jim and Helen Ede and houses the fine collection of art, from the early part of this century, which they gave to the University. Artists represented include Ben Nicholson, Christopher Wood, Alfred Wallis, David Jones, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska. There is a separate gallery for exhibitions of contemporary art, which are widely advertised and detailed on the website. Each exhibition is accompanied by a lively programme of lectures, workshops and discussion groups.

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The Farmland Museum & Denny Abbey

Ely Rd, Waterbeach, Cambridge, CB5 9PQ
Tel: 01223 860988     E-mail: info@farmlandmuseum.org.uk

At the Farmland Museum: Discover farming through the ages and learn about the rural history of Cambridgeshire with interactive and object displays for all ages. Visit a village shop and see a magnificent 17th Century stone barn and the workshops, which include a basket maker and a blacksmith. Explore a traditional Farmworkers Cottage and a Fenman's Hut. At Denny Abbey: Explore this lovely abbey still featuring superb Norman interiors. At different times, it housed Benedictine monks, the Knights templar and nuns of the Franciscan order, the Poor Clares. See the Franciscan nuns' refectory of the mid 14th Century and the rooms converted for their founder, the Countess of Pembroke.

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Whipple Museum History of Science

Free School Lane, Cambridge, CB2 3QA
Tel: 01223 330906    Fax: 01223 334554
E-mail: hps-whipple-museum@lists.cam.ac.uk 

The Whipple Museum is a pre-eminent collection of scientific instruments and models, dating from the Middle Ages to the present. Microscopes and telescopes, sundials, early slide rules, pocket electronic calculators, teaching and demonstration apparatus, as well as laboratory equipment, are included in this outstanding collection.

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Institute of Visual Culture

Fitzwilliam Museum, Trumpington Street, Cambridge
E-mail: admin@instituteofvisualculture.org

The Institute of Visual Culture, is a new organisation in Cambridge championing innovative contemporary art. Located in East Anglia while reaching out to the world, the Institute's own productions: exhibition projects, research, commissions, publications and conferences both contribute and actively challenge the international discourse surrounding the practice and theory of visual art and culture today.

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Whittlesey Museum

Town Hall, Market Street, Whittlesey, PE7 1BD
Tel: 01733 840968

A room setting with topical changing theme throughout the year. For further details please visit our website.

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Ely Museum

The Old Gaol, Market Street, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB7 4LS
Tel: 01353 666655       E-mail: admin@elymuseum.org.uk

The Museum tells the story of Ely and the Isle from the Ice Age to the present day. Many items on display for the first time. Tableaux of the condemned and debtors cells (original to the building) on the first floor. Rolling programme of talks and temporary displays in the Vemon Cross Room, and events anywhere in the museum.

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Cromwell Museum

Grammar School Walk, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, PE29 3LF
Tel: 01480 375830          E-mail: CromwellMuseum@cambridgeshire.gov.uk

Oliver Cromwell was born in Huntingdon in 1599 and was educated at the Town Grammar School, which is now the Museum. The Museum has a collection of portraits and personal objects that relate to Cromwell and family. His personal powder flask which carries his monogram of OC, devised within a sun and moon, is made of mother of pearl, inlaid with amber, ivory and silver, suggests that there were limits to the Lord Protector's austerity!

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The Stained Glass Museum

Ely Cathedral, The College, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB7 4DL
Tel: 01353 660347     E-mail: info@stainedglassmuseum.com

Over 100 panels of stained glass trace the history of stained glass from the Middle Ages to the present Burne Jones panel of St Matthew depicts a money-bag with coins spilling out illustrating his profession as a tax collector.

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Prickwillow Drainage Engine Museum

Main Street, Prickwillow, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB7 4UN
Tel: 01353 688360      E-mail: enquiries@prickwillow-engine-museum.co.uk

The Prickwillow site had been in continuous use as a Pumping Station since 1831. The Museum displays chart the history of Fenland drainage since the 17th Century. The effect of drainage on land levels and the workings of the modern drainage system.

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The Norris Museum

41 The Broadway, St. Ives, PE27 5BX
Tel: 01480 497314         E-mail: bob@norrismuseum.org.uk

The story of Huntingdonshire from earliest times; including fossils from the time of dinosaurs, remains of Mammoths, prehistoric and Roman Archaeology, objects from the Middle Ages, Civil War, lace making and fen skating. Hidden treasures include brooches and jewellery from Roman and Saxon times, silver pennies minted at Huntingdon in the Middle Ages, and medals won by soldiers of the old Huntingdon Regiment.

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Thorney Heritage Museum

The Tank Yard, Station Road, Thorney, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, PE6 0QE
Tel: 01733 270780     E-mail: Dot.Thorney@tesco.net

To many people, Thorney is a set of traffic lights on the A47 between Peterborough and Wisbech. However, it is a village with a rich history, and Hidden Treasures as shown and explained in the small, independently run Museum. Models and displays describe the villages development from a Saxon monastery, a major Benedictine house and an agricultural fen village. In the Nineteenth Century, the Dukes of Bedford built a model village for their workers, which resulted in the fine architecture and the development of local industries. Thorney would like to show you its secrets.

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St. Neots Museum

The Old Court, 8 New Street, St. Neots, PE19 1AE
Tel: 01480 388921          E-mail: curators@stneotsmuseum.org.uk

A new Museum telling the story of St Neots - a historic market town on the River Ouse and its surrounding area. The Museum is housed in the town's former Magistrates Court and Police Station, with its original cells, dating to the early 1900's. Attractive new displays cover the general history of the area from prehistoric times onwards, its crafts and trades, home and community life. Since opening in December 1995, the museum has 'rediscovered' and put on show many 'hidden treasures', such as the magnificently painted bass drum of the towns former Salvation Army Band.

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Chatteris Museum

14 Church Lane, Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, PE16 6JA
Tel: 01354 696319     E-mail: chatteris.museum@lineone.net

Chatteris Museum has recently moved from premises which had limited access to a modern town centre location. Entirely staffed by volunteers the work to establish a new Museum will take until at least the year 2000. Whilst work is being carried out to create the 5 permanent exhibitions galleries illustrating the history of the town, its people, trade and local fenland drainage, a continuing series of temporary exhibitions will display hidden treasures as they are rediscovered from storage.

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Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum Trust

1 South Brink Place, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 1JE
Tel: 01945 476358     E-mail: octaviahillmuseum@yahoo.uk

Octavia Hill (1838-1912) was born in the Grade II* Georgian house which is the home of the Birth Place Museum. The rooms commemorate and record the life and work of the co-founder of the National Trust, her family and fellow workers. It documents her achievements in many spheres of modern life. Her common place book started when she was 15, is on display, giving an unique insight into the development of her thought and philosophy.

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