history museums in Buckinghamshire
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Buckinghamshire Museums & Galleries

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

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.

Buckinghamshire Museums and Galleries

Church Street, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP20 2QP

Buckinghamshire County Museum has something of interest to every visitor. Housed in old and new buildings, a museum of great diversity and attraction. There are lots to touch, see and do. A Touch of Bucks tells the diverse natural and cultural heritage of Bucks through innovative displays. Discover the Celts and Romans, and find out about Villages, Farming, Fossils, Clay and Jewellery. Home to the award-winning Roald Dahl Children's Gallery. Complete with Willy Wonka and a Great Glass Elevator, these unique hands-on children's gallery was the winner of the Gulbenkian Award for Education in 1997/98. The judges described it as "without doubt the UK's best hands-on museum for children".
Tel: 01296 331441    Fax: 01296 334884
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blank tabTHE OLD GAOL MUSEUMMuseum
Market Hill, Buckingham, Bucks, MK18 1JX

The Old Gaol is the landmark building in Buckingham town centre. Restored extensively by the Buckingham Heritage Trust, it contains a fascinating Museum reflecting the building's history through an audio visual display, aspects of Buckingham's past, and Buckinghamshire's military history. The year 2000 saw the construction of a spectacular high-tech glass roof, spanning the original prisoners' exercise yard to create a new light-filled area for special exhibits and the new educational resource centre. Included is a 'Cell Shop' for obtaining souvenirs & mementoes, and it is also home to the Buckingham Tourist Information Centre. Regular themed exhibitions are also held at the Museum throughout the year.
Tel: 01280 823020    Fax: 01280 823020
E-mail: info@buckinghamoldgaol.org.uk
Web: www.buckinghamoldgaol.org.uk
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Chiltern Open Air Museum

ewlands Park, Gorelands Lane, Chalfont St. Giles, Bucks, HP8 4AB
Tel: 01494 871117    Fax: 01494 872774    Info line: 01494 872163
E-mail: coamuseum@netscape.net     Web: www.coam.org.uk

Step back in time: get a feel of the 1940s in a fully-furnished Prefab, visit a Victorian Toll House, experience 50AD at the Iron Age House or revisit bygone rural Bucks on the farm. All these and other historic buildings have been re-erected here, in a relaxing countryside setting. Spend a couple of hours or a day, enjoying the woodland walk, farm animals and demonstrations of traditional skills or visiting the shop and café.

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The Cowper & Newton Museum

Orchard Side, Market Place, Olney, Buckinghamshire, MK46 4AJ
Tel: 01234 711516    Fax: 0870 1640662
E-mail: cnm@mkheritage.co.uk     Web: www.mkheritage.co.uk

See Cowper's Parlour where he and Mrs. Unwin took tea - 'the cups that cheer but do not inebriate' and the famous sofa which inspired The Task, also his self-designed unique filing cabinet. Many original manuscripts and books connected with John Newton are on display. He was the Author of Amazing Grace and many other hymns. A reformed slave-trader, curate of Olney and renowned preacher, he worked with Wilberforce to abolish the slave trade. The two charming gardens which are dedicated to flowers, trees and plants, now entirely stocked with specimens dating from the 18th century or earlier and are grown organically. The vegetable garden contains Cowper's Summer House - his 'verse manufactory' where he and his friends frequently met for conversation and smoking.

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Milton Keynes Museum

McConnell Drive, Wolverton, Milton Keynes, Bucks, MK12 5EL
Tel: 01908 316222    Fax: 01908 319148
E-mail: info@mkmuseum.org.uk      Web: www.mkmuseum.org.uk

Housed in a beautiful Victorian Farmstead, once owned by the Radcliffe Trust, this large and constantly changing Museum has something for all members of the family. Room settings cover all aspects of Victorian/Edwardian domestic life and the nursery, toy and living rooms feature in special displays. The schoolroom is quite an experience. Restoration of the Wolverton to Stony Stratford tramcar has taken several years. Close by, in the Hall of Transport, is an early engine after the design of local inventor Herbert Ackroyd Stuart. His contribution at least equals that of Diesel. The Museum has one of the finest collections of working telephones for you to try. Shops in 'The Street' are now open and more will open throughout the year. The Museum is all on one level, accessible for wheelchairs and has toilets suitable for those with disabilities.

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Wycombe Museum

Priory Avenue, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP13 6PX
Tel: 01494 421895
E-mail: museum@wycombe.gov.uk     Web: www.wycombe.gov.uk

A children's Discovery Room, trails and special activities combine with imaginative displays to make this a lively museum for visitors of all ages. Permanent exhibits, videos and sound recordings tell the story of Wycombe, Marlow, Princes Risborough and their villages, whilst the Special Exhibitions offers a changing programme of displays about local history, furniture, art or science, ensuring there is always something different to see. Everyone with an eye for style appreciates the museum's superb collection of Windsor chairs and other furniture made by renowned Wycombe companies such as Ercol and G-Plan. Together with other historic items, they trace the fascinating development of High Wycombe's famous furniture industry, which flourished using beech wood from the Chiltern Hills. The museum occupies a gracious 18th-century house set in very pleasant gardens which include a pond and a Norman 'castle' mound. Popular for picnics, the grounds also host special demonstrations and events.

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