Gordon Russell Design Museum

furniture displays in the Gordon Russell Museum
Guided tours icon Shop icon Study area icon Visual disability facilities icon Wheelchair access icon

The Gordon Russell Museum is housed in the Grade-II-listed workshop used by Russell and his furniture company in Broadway, Worcestershire between 1920 and 2000. It charts the work, lives and success of the company throughout the 20th century and displays a unique collection of furniture, decorative art and archival material.

“The furniture was cutting edge in its day and was a leading force within the Arts and Crafts movement and it’s vital that we protect it and celebrate the story of its success,” HLF regional manager Anne Jenkins.

Sir Gordon Russell (1892-1980) became internationally recognised for his contribution to design and craftsmanship. His work combined a flair for design with functionality. He was a major contributor to the design of mass produced utility furniture during the Second World War and his brother, Dick Russell, designed cabinets for Murphy Radio between 1930 - 1952, saving the company from the Great Depression.

Venue Type:

Archive, Museum

Opening hours

The museum is open
March - October 11.00-17.00 Tuesday to Sunday
November, December, and February 11.00-16.00 Tuesday to Sunday
Also open Bank Holiday Mondays

The museum is closed on Mondays (except Bank Holidays), and throughout January.

Admission charges

Adults £4.00 Concessions £3.50
Children under 16 £1.00 (Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult)

As well as a collection of furniture, the Trust has about a thousand drawings, original catalogues and a complete photographic record of furniture made by the company up to 1988 including Murphy Radio cabinets designed by Dick Russell in the 1930s. The collections also include products designed in collaboration with the company, including rugs by Marian Pepler. Also held is material relating to the Lygon Arms in Broadway, bought by Gordon Russell's father in 1904, behind which the factory was built. The museum is housed within one of the original factory workshops.

Collection details

Trade and Commerce, Social History, Industry, Design, Decorative and Applied Art, Archives

Key artists and exhibits

  • Arts and Crafts
  • Furniture
  • Lygon Arms
  • Murphy Radio
  • Gordon Russell
  • Dick Russell
  • Marian Pepler
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Detail from modern furniture made using digital technology and handcraft

Teaching the Machine Manners: Making at the dawn of a modern age

  • 1 May — 18 July 2015 *on now

Looks at Gordon Russell's formative years in the Cotswolds, steeped in the Arts & Crafts Movement and follows his development of new production methods that fostered a positive relationship between craft and industry. Thanks to the generosity of lenders the exhibition will include several early Gordon Russell designs: a venereed cigarette box and a polished steel wall sconce to complement the museum’s collections and archives. Also on display, for the first time in public, is a tea caddy designed by Ernest Gimson in the early 1920s. Textiles by Paul Nash, Ben Nicholson, Marion Dorn and other artists of this period have been lent by the Target Gallery and Esther Fitzgerald.

The upstairs gallery examines the role of hand and machine in an era of digital technology, through the work of a leading contemporary furniture, Waywood, based in Chadlington. From first thoughts to 3D printed maquettes to the finished object made with both a CNC (computer controlled cutting) router and traditional hand techniques visitors will be able to see how Waywood have mantained Gordon Russell’s tenet to ‘teach the machine manners’. Our thanks to Trinity House Gallery (http://www.trinityhousepaintings.com/) for sponsoring this exhibition.

This show complements, and overlaps, the larger show at Compton Verney 'The Arts and Crafts House: Then and Now' (27 June to 13 September 2015).

Suitable for

  • Any age


£5.00 entrance fee to museum includes free entry to exhibition

Gordon Russell Design Museum
15 Russell Square
WR12 7AP







01386 854695

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.