Dorman Museum

Dorman Museum
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The Dorman Museum now has 8 permanent galleries to suit every taste from local history to dinosaurs, Ancient Egypt to 20th Century Woman. Our water gallery is especially popular with children.

Dorman Museum also holds the largest public collections in the world of local Linthorpe Art Pottery, and works by the renowned Victorian designer Dr. Christopher Dresser.

In addition to our regular programme of exhibitions and events we are continuing to add to our permanent collections so visitors can be sure to see something new each visit.

The Victorian-style Dressers Tea Room is the perfect place to relax after your visit, or to enjoy a delightful afternoon tea.

Why not combine a visit to the Dorman Museum with a visit to the beautiful Victorian Albert Park, situated adjacent to the Museum, and the colourful independent businesses on Linthorpe Road?

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Tuesday-Sunday: 9.30 am - 4.30 pm
Last entry: 4.15pm

Christmas Day
Boxing Day
New Years Day
May close first week in January for annual maintenance - check website for details.

Admission charges

The Dorman Museum is a free venue, however there may be charges applied for special events and activities.

Additional info

Winner of ADAPT award for Excellence in Access 2003
TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2015
VAQAS registered
Dressers Tea Room
Temporary exhibitions
Regular event programme
Special seasonal events

Ceramics, social history, local history, archaeology, biological and earth sciences, industrial history, ethnography, military, coins and medals.

Collection details

Agriculture, Archaeology, Archives, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Industry, Land Transport, Maritime, Medicine, Natural Sciences, Religion, Science and Technology, Social History, Sport, Toys and Hobbies, Weapons and War, World Cultures

Key artists and exhibits

  • The largest public collection of items designed by influential Victorian designer Christopher Dresser.
  • The largest public collection of innovative Victorian Linthorpe Art Pottery, produced locally.
  • T. H. Nelson collection - an extensive ornithological collection, preserved in their original cases and in the same layout as a condition of their bequest.
  • Acklam Estates Plan - a large 17th century plan of the estates of the local Hustler family, conserved with an HLF grant.
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Invasion - Stormtrooper


  • 3 October 2015 — 17 January 2016 *on now

Something out of this world is coming to the Dorman Museum!

From Star Trek to Star Wars, Alien to Andromeda, visitors of all ages will be thrilled to come face to face with alien invaders good, bad and ugly, from some of the world's best known sci-fi franchises.

Perfect for older children with big imaginations, or lifetime fans!

The museum is open between 9:30am and 4:30pm on Tuesdays - Sundays, and is closed on Mondays, except Bank Holidays. For Christmas opening hours please visit

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


Adult: £4
Child/concession: £2.50
Family (2 adults + up to 3 children): £10


Nick Sharratt's 'Wellyphant'

Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants: The Work of Nick Sharratt

  • 23 January — 3 April 2016

Find out exactly what a Wellyphant is in this wonderfully colourful exhibition, perfect for families.

Children's illustrator Nick Sharratt has written and illustrated at least 40 children’s books and illustrated close to 250 more for other authors, so this exhibition is bound to be packed with characters children will recognise - from the red-boots-wearing Wellyphant from Elephant Wellyphant to Jacqueline Wilson's mischievous heroine Tracy Beaker.

Packed with colour and fun activities, including dressing up and creating your own 'Sharacter', Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants is a perfect way to (re)introduce children to the joys of drawing and reading.

The museum is open between 9:30am and 4:30pm on Tuesdays - Sundays, and is closed on Mondays, except Bank Holidays.

Suitable for

  • Especially for children


Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Family Activities

Little Lions family craft sessions every Thursday (term time) are perfect for little hands. 1-2:30pm. Small charge applies.
Craft activities on Wednesdays and Fridays during school holidays. Free.
Please call the museum in advance on 01642 813781 to ensure that a session is running and avoid disappointment.

How to obtain

Some activities carry a charge so call the museum in advance on 01642 813781 for details.

Dorman Museum
Linthorpe Road




01642 813781


01642 358100

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.