history museums in Durham
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Co Durham & Teesside Museums & Galleries

including civic and independent art galleries and museums in Co Durham & Teesside...

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.

Co Durham & Teesside Museums and Galleries

Upper Weardale, Bishop Auckland, Co. Durham, DL13 1AR (A689)
Killhope is accredited as a 'Quality Assured Visitor Attraction' where visitors can discover the lives of Lead Mining families.

Park Level mine is a real adventure. Equipped with hardhat, lamp and wellies you are guided down the original tunnel.

On the surface, work as a washer boy and find your own lead ore.

See the North of England's largest working water wheel.

Quiet Woodland Walks, Exhibitions, Shop and Café enhance your memorable day out.

Sorry no access for wheelchair users down the mine.
Tel: 01388 537505    Fax: 01388 537617
E-mail: info@killhope.org.uk
Web: www.killhope.org.uk
See our website
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blank tabTOWN HALLCastles & Historic Monuments
Market Place, Durham City
Smoking Facilities

The Town Hall was built in 1850 and features superb stained glass windows, paintings, heraldic symbols and a magnificent fireplace of local stone. Also the guildhall, first built in 1356. Guided tours by appointment only.
Tel: 0191 301 8223
E-mail: durhamtownhall@durham.gov.uk
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Beamish - The North of England Open Air Museum

Beamish, Co. Durham, DH9 0RG
Tel: 0191 370 4000      E-mail: museum@beamish.org.uk
Web: www.beamish.org.uk

Beamish is one of the leading tourist attractions in the north of England. It vividly recreates life in the North of England as it was in the 1800s and 1900s. Costumed staff welcome visitors to the turn of the century town with shops, houses, working pub, newspaper office, garage, sweetshop and sweet factory. Guided tours are given underground at a real "drift" mine in the Colliery Village and a row of pit cottages shows how the pitmen and their families lived. There is a Methodist Chapel and Village School here too. Home Farm has traditional breeds of livestock and poultry and a large farmhouse kitchen, with dairy and bailiff's office. The Railway Station is complete with goods yard, signal box, locomotives and rolling stock. Pockerley Manor and Horse Yard is based on a medieval fortified manor house and illustrates the life of a yeoman farming family almost 200 years ago. Allow 4 hours for a visit in summer, 2 hours in winter.

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Durham University Oriental Museum

Elvet Hill Road, Durham City     Tel: 0191 334 5694

The only museum in the country devoted to oriental art and antiquities. Covers all major cultures and periods of the East from Ancient Egypt through India, Tibet and China to Japan.

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The Josephine and John Bowes Museum

Barnard Castle, County Durham, DL12 8NP
Tel: 01833 690606     Email: info@thebowesmuseum.org.uk
Web: www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk

A French-style chateau housing one of Britain's finest museums. Its collections are designated as 'pre-eminent', giving national recognition to their outstanding quality. They include the largest collection of French paintings in the country and one of the largest collections of Spanish paintings in the country, furniture, ceramics, textiles and local antiquities. Attractive gardens with parterre. Cafe in summer.

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Weardale Museum

Ireshopeburn, DL13 1HD
Tel: 01388 517433     Email: dtheatherington@ormail.co.uk
Web: www.weardalemuseum.co.uk

A small museum established and ran by volunteers. Operating to the high standards, the museum achieved accreditation from MLA and a Carnegie Award for excellent interpretation.

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