Grosvenor Museum

Grosvenor Museum
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The Grosvenor Museum was founded in 1885 and its origins are linked to the Chester Society of Natural Science Literature & Art founded by Charles Kingsley in 1871, and to Chester Archaeological Society. The Museum holds an internationally important collection of Roman Stones, found in the City walls in the 19th century. There is also a fine collection of Chester silver, the Art Collection includes modern works. We also have a good natural history collection, including many examples of Victorian taxidermy, geological specimens plus butterflies, insects and birds. There is an interesting 17th century period house attached to the museum with many period roomsets starting in the 17th century.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

Mon-Sat 1030-1700
Sun 1300-1600

Closed 24, 25 & 26 December, 1 January & Good Friday

Admission charges

Free.

Additional info

We run a wide range of activities for children particularly in school holidays. Please note for events involving children - Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult at all times - and in general children should always be accompanied.

Primarily Roman, including an internationally important collection of Roman Stones, and archaeological finds from the surrounding area - the collections also covers Fine Art, Natural History, Local Silver, Period House Room displays & small costume gallery, Timeline gallery. Rolling programme of varying temporary exhibitions.

Collection details

Weapons and War, Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Personalities, Natural Sciences, Music, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Coins and Medals, Archaeology, Religion, World Cultures, Trade and Commerce

Key artists and exhibits

  • Roman Inscribed and Sculpted Stones
  • Varied Art Collection - medieval to modern - all mediums
  • Extensive Chester Silver collection including Delamere Horn
  • Period Room displays from the 16th century onwards in the Period House
  • Louise Rayner watercolours - not always on display due to light exposure
  • Charles Kingsley - Natural history collections
  • Victorian & Edwardian costume
  • Agricola lead pig & other Roman artefacts - glass/jewellery/Samian Ware
  • Willoughby Gardiner coin collection & other coins, medals & tokens
  • Medieval shoes
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
mini

Minis & More: Female Fashion from the Swinging 60s

  • 11 July 2015 — 1 May 2017 *on now

This small exhibition shows day & evening dresses from Christian Dior, Susan Small and Nola Gowns of Chester

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

free - up two flights of stairs in the Costume Gallery - no lift

Vision

Revelation: The Art of Marcus Usherwood

  • 23 January — 17 April 2016 *on now

Come and be awed by the apocalyptic visions of this Chester based artist which proclaim his Christian faith and understanding of the prophecies of the Bible

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

free - upstairs in exhibition gallery 2 - no disabled access

Facade

Inspired by Gothic: Ruins, Romance Revival

  • 5 March — 26 June 2016

The medieval past has often been seen in romantic terms – idealised as an age of faith and chivalry, its evocative remains stirring the emotions and appealing to tradition. It has been a rich source of inspiration for the arts in Cheshire. The Norman earls of Chester have long symbolised the city’s pride in her antiquity, and artists through the ages have delighted in depicting medieval buildings. Cheshire has a wealth of Gothic Revival architecture, seen supremely at Eaton Hall and in the restorations of Chester Cathedral. Other aspects of Chester’s medieval heritage, such as the Mystery Plays, remain a vibrant part of the city’s cultural life.
Supported by the Megan Gwynne-Jones Charitable Trust and the Chester Archaeological Society

Suitable for

  • 14-15
  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

free exhibition

Blue Remembered Hills

Anne Lever: The Poetic Landscape

  • 23 April — 17 July 2016

Anne Lever lives and paints in rural Cheshire, which inspires her love and knowledge of the British landscape and its history. Her work is ordered by geometry and infused with feeling for the spirit of place. Her painting engages mind and heart but speaks also to the soul. Working in the imaginative Neo-Romantic tradition she is a frequent collaborator with the poet Michael Fox, whose responses to her painting form part of this exhibition.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Exhibition Gallery 2 upstairs - no disabled access - free exhibition

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.
Samurai armour

Samurai Arms and Armour

  • 14 November 2015 — 21 February 2016 *on now

This exhibition showcases exceptional pieces made by some of the greatest Japanese sword smiths and armourers of the 16th c. to the present day reflecting the military history of Japan and extraordinary lives of the Samurai.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

free

Totoro

My Neighbour Totoro

  • 15 February 2016 2-3:30pm

Lecture Theatre 2-3.30pm
Free, but must be booked in advance through the What’s On section of our website www.westcheshiremuseums.co.uk.

The animated story of two young Japanese sisters and their interactions with friendly wood spirits in post-war rural Japan has become a cultural icon for its beautiful images and fantastical story. Come and fall in love with the wonderful, kind, huge Totoro and the amazing twelve-legged Catbus – normal buses will forever be dull in comparison. Dubbed into English. Rated PG.

Supported by CH1ChesterBid

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

Lecture Theatre 2-3.30pm
Free, but must be booked in advance through the What’s On section of our website www.westcheshiremuseums.co.uk.

Teacup

Japanese Teatime

  • 16 February 2016 2-4pm

Newstead Gallery 2-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Decorate your own Japanese style tea cup, try some Japanese tea, and taste some traditional Japanese red bean paste treats.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

Free, suggested donation of £1.50

large jug

130 Years of Objects

  • 17 February 2016 11am-4pm

Museum Galleries
11am-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
This year the Grosvenor Museum celebrates its 130th Birthday. Over these years it has collected a huge variety of objects from all periods of history. Have a look at, and handle, some of the collection that shows the types of object we have collected throughout the past 130 years; and then have a go at our special celebration craft and discovery activities.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

Faith

Faith Belief and Spirituality in Modern Art: Apocalypse Postponed

  • 18 February 2016 1:30-3pm

Lecture Theatre 1.30-3pm £3, pay at the door.
Far from being a godless age, the 20th and 21st centuries have seen the genesis of some memorable religious images, often produced by celebrated artists. If you add to this all the works which spring from general or new kinds of spirituality, you have a very broad range of works indeed. This lecture by Adrian Sumner examines the wealth of formal or ‘official’ religious art, but also uncovers Existentialists, Spiritualists, Theosophists, Rosicrucians, New Apocalyptics, Jedi and the Golden Dawn. Full of surprises, full of spirit, and full of hope, this lecture is for all those who believe in Art.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£3 pay on the door

kimono peg dolls

Kimono Peg Dolls

  • 18 February 2016 2-4pm

Newstead Gallery
2-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Learn about traditional Japanese dress and make your own kimono peg doll to take home.

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15

Admission

free, £1.50 donation suggested

Samurai

Japanese Headwear

  • 19 February 2016 2-4pm

Japanese Headwear
Newstead Gallery
2-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Make your own Samurai helmet with antlers – as seen in our Samurai exhibition – or a decorated Japanese style hair comb.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

So Rahman

A Charity Evening with So Rahman

  • 26 February 2016 7:30-9pm

Lecture Theatre 7.30-9pm
£5, students £2.20, plus a complimentary glass of wine. Book via www.ticketsource.co.uk/westcheshiremuseums.
You can take the boy out of Chester but you can’t take Chester out of the boy! Award winning journalist and TV presenter So Rahman was born and educated in Chester.
He worked for ITV Granada News and won the Royal Television Society Award before joining Al Jazeera International in 2005. With 25 years in TV, including Channel 4, CNN and the BBC, he has a wealth of experiences to share. So Rahman speaks frankly about his past, the story behind his portrait in the Grosvenor Museum, and why he is giving this presentation to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Society and the museum.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£5, students £2.20, plus a complimentary glass of wine.
Book via www.ticketsource.co.uk/westcheshiremuseums.

Cheshire Castles

Cheshire Castles in Context

  • 12 March 2016 2:30-4pm

Lecture Theatre 2.30-4pm
The military and strategic role of Cheshire’s medieval castles, as well as the display of personal power, played a part in the choice of locations, the purposes to which the castles were employed, and the shaping of their landscapes. Their form and siting
were also influenced by each builder’s desire to appropriate pre-Anglo-Norman power centres and ancient locales. This lecture by Dr Rachel Swallow provides a better understanding of the initial purpose of Cheshire’s castles in their contemporary contexts. Organised by Chester Archaeological Society

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Chester Archaeological Society members free; non-members £4, pay at the door.

Grosvenor Museum

Memories of the Museum

  • 15 March 2016 2-4pm

Lecture Theatre 2-4pm Free, suggested donation £3.
With the Grosvenor Museum celebrating its 130th Birthday, we want to hear your stories, experiences and memories of the museum. Join us for a talk on the history
of the museum, followed by a chance to share your stories and memories of the Grosvenor Museum through our oral history project and museum memory box.

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 14-15
  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

free, suggested donation £3

procession

Royal Progress of Queen Elizabeth & King James on the Move

  • 17 March 2016 7:30-9pm

Roger Mitchell enters the colourful world of the 16th century Royal progress

Admission

GMS members free, non members £4, students with a valid card £2

gothic tales

Gothic Tales by Candlelight

  • 20 March 2016 2-3:15pm

Art Gallery
2-2.15pm: Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey
2.30-2.45pm: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
3-3.15pm: Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
Free, suggested donation £3.
Join our costumed interpreter for atmospheric extracts from three classic Gothic tales.

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 14-15
  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

Free, suggested donation £3

The Lion and the Lamb

Revelation: Exhibition Tour

  • 26 March 2016 2-3pm

Exhibition Gallery Two 2-3pm Free, suggested donation £3.
Join Chester-based artist Marcus Usherwood for a guided tour of his exhibition Revelation, featuring paintings which proclaim his Christian faith and his understanding of the prophecies in the Bible, contrasting the ugliness of evil with the beauty of holiness. He will explain how his techniques aim to render a convincing vision apparently devoid of any human touch, so that his paintings appear almost divinely created. Come and meet the author of these apocalyptic visions!

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 14-15
  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

Free, suggested donation £3

Gothic city

Make a Gothic City

  • 5 April 2016 2-4pm

Newstead Gallery
2-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Our foyer display case is going to be the portal to a miniature Gothic world, so come and help us make some looming buildings, soaring spires and black-clad inhabitants.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

Big Weather Day

Big Weather Day

  • 6 April 2016 11am-4pm

Museum Galleries 11am-4pm, drop-in Free, suggested donation £1.50.
No matter what the weather is doing outside, come and join us for Big Weather Day, inspired by the exhibition of paintings by Marcus Usherwood. Enjoy creating a scientific storm in a bottle, use coloured fabrics to make textured sunset pictures, have a go at presenting an ‘historical weather report’, and follow our weather trail through the galleries.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

Rose window

Stained Glass Rose Windows

  • 7 April 2016 2-4pm

Newstead Gallery 2-4pm, drop-in Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Capture the brilliantly glowing colours of a cathedral window using cellophane and laminated card.

Suitable for

  • 5-6
  • 7-10
  • 11-13

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

wings

Angels Wings

  • 12 April 2016 From 2pm

Newstead Gallery 2-4pm, drop-in
Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Make your own pair of beautiful wings to wear.

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 7-10
  • 14-15

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

Cathedral

The Chester Cathedral Estate

  • 13 April 2016 7:30-9pm

Lecture Theatre 7.30-9pm
Chester Civic Trust members free; non-members £3, pay at the door.
Standing at the heart of the city, Chester Cathedral is the largest complex of medieval buildings in Cheshire and one of the best preserved Benedictine abbeys in Britain. In this lecture the Revd Canon Peter Howell-Jones, Vice-Dean since 2011, reflects on developing the cathedral’s commercial offer, working with visitors and tour groups, reviewing the admission policy, and much more. The reintroduction of free admission, special exhibitions, and other initiatives such as ‘Cathedral at Height’ and the Falconry, are changing the way the congregation and citizens think about the cathedral. Organised by Chester Civic Trust

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Chester Civic Trust members free, non-members £3 pay at the door

Beowulf

Tombs in Beowulf

  • 13 April 2016 1-2pm

Lecture Theatre 1-2pm £3, pay at the door.
Why was the hero Beowulf cremated? Why was a mound raised over his ashes? This talk by Professor Howard Williams introduces the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf, its funerals and its tombs, before exploring archaeological evidence that sheds light on the material world in which the poem was composed and performed. The talk includes a new interpretation of what the dragon’s barrow and Beowulf’s own tomb meant for the poem’s early medieval audience. Organised by the University of Chester

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£3 pay at the door

toys

130 Years of Toys

  • 13 April 2016 11am-4pm

Museum Galleries 11am-4pm, drop-in Free, suggested donation £1.50.
People’s daily lives have changed significantly since the museum opened in 1886.
In this special session to celebrate the museum’s birthday, you can have a look at how toys have changed over the past 130 years, thanks to advances in manufacturing and technology. Handle and play with our special toy collection, before making some historic toys to take home.

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

creepy tales

Creepy Tales by Candlelight

  • 14 April 2016 2:30-3:45pm

Join our costumed interpreter and listen to family friendly extracts from spooky Gothic stories

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15
  • 16-17

Admission

Free, suggested donation of £1.50

Dutch Houses

The Story of a Street (Bridge St. Chester over 2000yrs)

  • 14 April 2016 7:30-9pm

Bridge Street Chester goes back to Roman times - David Cummings looks at its varied history

Admission

GMS members free, non members £4, students with a valid card £2

Dead Relevant

Dead Relevant? Mortuary Archaeology in Contemporary Society.

  • 19 April 2016 9am-5pm

Join Dr Ing-Marie Back Danielsson to discover the relevance of mortuary archaeology to contemporary society

Suitable for

  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

Free - come and join the debate

Tombs of Terror

Tombs of Terror

  • 20 April 2016 1-2pm

Lecture Theatre 1-2pm £3, pay at the door.
What do we know about the legendary smith Weland? The 13th-century Icelandic poem the Lay of Völundr records one version of a far older story of the magical smith, his imprisonment and subsequent violent revenge on his captors. This talk by Professor Howard Williams introduces the literary and archaeological evidence for early medieval smiths and the specific significance of the story of Völundr or Weland in the Early Middle Ages. It sheds new light on why a Neolithic chambered tomb on the Berkshire Downs became known as ‘Wayland’s Smithy’. Organised by the University of Chester

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£3 pay on the door

Glen Almond

5000 Years of land use in upper Glen Almond Perthshire

  • 25 April 2016 7:30-9pm

Lecture Theatre 7.30-9pm
Chester Society for Landscape History members free; non-members £4, pay at the door.
This lecture by Professor Richard Oram explores the landscape of upper Glen Almond in Perthshire, a multi-layered record of over 5000 years of human settlement and land-use. From the monumental Neolithic chambered tomb at Clach na Tiompain to the 1930s micro-hydro scheme serving the shooting-lodge at Achnafree, successive transitions in modes of exploitation and settlement form, evidence of profound changes in climate or in global economic systems, are reflected in the glen’s historic environment. Organised by Chester Society for Landscape History

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Chester Soc of Landscape History members free, non members £4 pay at the door

Powerful tombs

Powerful Tombs: The Medieval 'Living' Dead

  • 27 April 2016 1-2pm

Lecture Theatre 1-2pm £3, pay at the door.
Medieval tombs allowed the dead to reach down the centuries, acquiring new narratives and identities from the Middle Ages to the present day. This talk by Professor Howard Williams explores the power of tombs in the medieval world, their destruction, translation and restoration in the modern era, and how antiquaries and archaeologists make and re-make the medieval dead as powerful components of popular culture from the 19th to the 21st centuries. Organised by the University of Chester

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£3 pay at the door

Erddig House

Three Erddig Victorian Ladies

  • 17 May 2016 7:30-9pm

Jill Burton explores the lives of the Victorian ladies of Erddig House, near Wrexham North Wales

Admission

GMS members free, non members £4, students with a valid card £2

Commanding views

Commanding Views: A History of Landscape Art

  • 18 May 2016 1:30-3pm

Lecture Theatre 1.30-3pm £3, pay at the door.
The history of landscape painting is like a map of our attitude to, and relationship with, nature. Naturally, our current preoccupations with climate change, earth’s diminishing resources, and ecology in general, make these concerns increasingly topical. In this lecture, Adrian Sumner will explore the arc of our love-affair with landscape, and the bitter aftermath of love-gone-wrong, as well as charting the unknown territory of hopes and dreams.

Suitable for

  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

£3 pay at the door

Medieval Feast

Gothic Feast

  • 31 May 2016 2-4pm

Museum Galleries 2-4pm, drop-in, Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Help us celebrate our Gothic exhibition in style with a feast. There will be all sorts of interesting, and sometimes unusual, medieval food to see and smell. Plus music, costume, entertainment, and children’s crafts. More information available on our website nearer the time.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

free, suggested donation of £1.50

Fashion plate

130 Years of Fashion

  • 1 June 2016 11am-4pm

Museum Galleries 11am-4pm, drop-in Free, suggested donation £1.50.
In this special birthday event, take a look at how much fashion has changed in the 130 years since the museum opened. You can see some historical outfits, handle and dress up with our costume collection, before making your own historic fashion doll to take home.

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 7-10
  • 14-15

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

Gothic Hat

Mad Gothic Hats

  • 1 June 2016 11am-4pm

Newstead Gallery 2-4pm, drop-in Free, suggested donation £1.50.
Make a fabulous black hat with lace, skulls, a looming castle or a flock of crows on it

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 7-10
  • 14-15

Admission

free, suggested donation £1.50

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.
Romans

Teacher Packs

Teaching Packs

How to obtain

Ring 01244 972120 and ask for Lorna Kernahan Moore to make a school booking, or for the Education department call 01244 972066 to speak to Kate Harland, or Fran Bray on 01244 972089.

Roman Tour in progress

Roman Tours

We now have armour which the children can wear whilst on the Roman Soldier guided tours. This gives scope for the imagination and allows the children to feel more involved in the experience.

How to obtain

To obtain further information and to book tours please ring Lorna Kernahan Moore on 01244 972120, Kate Harland on 01244 972066 or Fran Bray on 01244 972089

Grosvenor Museum
27 Grosvenor Street
Chester
Cheshire
CH1 2DD
England

Website

www.grosvenormuseum.co.uk

E-mail

ruth.marshall@cheshirewest.gov.uk

Telephone

General Switchboard

01244 972197

Central Office

01244 972109

Education/School Bookings

01244 72120

Fax

01244 347587

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.
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