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Great 'Free UK Museums & Galleries' Hunt

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  • The Fishing Heritage Centre in Grimsby has free entry to it's art galleries and free children's activities during the school holidays.
  • Top museums in most large UK cities, but especially The Kelvingrove in Glasgow, teh Laing in Newcastle (look for John Martin's paintings and the Pre-Raph stuff) Birmingham's wonderful restaurant, The Museum and Art Gallery in Leeds (incl Henry Moore) and the Walker in Liverpool. There are also lots of museums in smaller towns (some of which do require donations as they are staffed by volunteers) but a special mention for the museum in Ledbury which has a fantastic history of the town and probably would relate to other towns around the country.
    Remember the Tories are probably going to start charging again.
    Regards
    to all
    Pat
  • There are not many free (or even not free ) Art Galleries in the middle of the south coast, but The Southampton Art Gallery is always free and well worth a visit, though the cafe is closed on Sundays.
  • I totally recommend Big Pit which is the National Coal Museum of Wales. It is totally free and you get an underground tour in the mine. You can get more information if you Google "Big Pit" and I think it is well worth a visit!

    Blaenavon, Torfaen
    Open daily 9.30 am–5 pm. Underground tours run frequently 10am–3.30 pm
  • aviskavisk Forumite
    27 posts
    There is an excellent museum in Reading, housed in the old Town Hall, which is a wonderful Victorian building by the architect Alfred Waterhouse. It covers the history of the town, local arts and crafts, and with lots of activities for children.


    It covers the amazing Reading Abbey, the fascinating history of Huntley and Palmers and the invention of the biscuit tin, and the various digs at Silchester.

    There is gallery containing a replica of the Bayeux Tapestry, and a small art gallery for temporary exhibitions. There is also a wonderful display of pottery from Aldermaston.

    There is also a Riverside Museum at Blakes Lock, on the River Kennet.

    Also in Reading is the Museum of English Rural Life
    which is one of a number of museums run by the University.

    (I have not been allowed to post links to the websites of these museums, so you will need to google the following

    reading museums
    merl reading
    university of reading museums

    Sorry about that!)


    .
  • Important update! We have recently reviewed and updated our Forum Rules and FAQs. Please take the time to familiarise yourself with the latest version.
  • My favourite museum is the British Museum, free entry and it would take days to look at everything. So many different things from all over the world. And all those issues about should they have the stuff.

    In south London I'd heartily recommend the free Museum of Croydon. There are displays about Croydon and its people spanning the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Also the temporary exhibitions are free, currently a brilliant art exhibition called Scene Unseen. Vested interest here as I work at the Museum of Croydon but it really is a great free museum to spend a few hours.

    Details on the website MuseumofCroydon.com
  • bnaboundbnabound Forumite
    85 posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    The Lightbox Art Gallery and Museum in Woking, Surrey is fabulous. It's only been open for about two years but has constantly changing exhibitions of all kinds. Most of them are free and there's always something going on for kids (workshops and the like - some free, some not). There are also free tours of the Lightbox I think on Tuesdays but you need to check the website and book in advance. Oh and the cafe that's part of the Lightbox makes some divine food (though obviously that's not free! LOL)
  • The Museum of Lancashire in Preston is £3 for adults £2 for concessions and children are free. The museum has lots of child interactive activities. On the 14th November it is holding a 'We'll Meet Again' day, there will be all sorts of WW2 activities happening.
    The museum is in the Lancashire Museums group, an Explorer pass can be bought for £18 per year, which will get you into the 13 or so museums in the group, two adults, two concessions and children are included on the pass or get a annual season pass for only six pounds for one adult at a nominated musuem.
    A great day will be had by all if you go and visit the Museum of Lancashire, the staff are very friendly and the museum holds childrens activities during school holidays. My boys all love going to this museum and enjoy climbing in the tank and imagining they are driving it or going into the WW 1 trench and Anderson shelter.
  • Sheffield is a great city for seeing art - with Site Gallery, an international centre for contemporary art, completely free to visit! Its truly exciting to see the work of artists from all over the world in a city outside of London, with sypmosiums, film screenings, and many other events going on...

    There are other galleries scattered right across the city such as Bloc Gallery and S1 Artspace, both with some innovative work being shown. More centrally there is the Graves art gallery which has an extensive collection from the 16th to the 21st century. All these are free.

    Sheffield Contemporary Art Forum are fantastic - check out their website, it is a reliable guide to all thats on and coming up. They organise gallery crawls so that visitors, (especially those new to Sheffield and its art scene) can have a thorough evening finding their feet, with free drinks and guides thrown in.
  • edited 5 November 2009 at 7:49AM
    dahjohdahjoh Forumite
    47 posts
    edited 5 November 2009 at 7:49AM
    Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford http://www.prm.ox.ac.uk/visit.html is located within the Natural history museum. The entrance to the Pitt Rivers Museum is through the Oxford University Museum Natural History (OUMNH) on Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3PW. The Pitt Rivers' entrance is at the far wall of the OUMNH. Visitors need to walk across the ground floor to reach it. See The University of Oxford's maps for location. There are fascinating artefacts for all ages including the shrunken heads from South America and a gigantic totem pole. Disabled access (including parking booked in advance) and baby changing facilities. No regular parking facilities but there are 4 park and ride car parks round the city. This is a great way to enjoy 2 museums in one visit.
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