Southend Central Museum and Planetarium

Central Museum
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The Central Museum is situated in Victoria Avenue, and houses the Planetarium and principal artefact store.

The Central Museum was opened in April 1981, in a magnificent Edwardian library building. The displays tell the story of the natural and human history of south east Essex.

The Southend Planetarium is the only public Planetarium facility in the south-east, outside of London. It presents a range of talks about astronomy and the night sky. All our presentations are given live, giving plenty of opportunity for any questions you may wish to ask, and are generally suitable for ages 7 to adult.

Planetarium Shows run on Saturdays, at 11.00am, 2.00pm and 3.00pm. In school holidays, shows run Tues - Sat at 11am, 2pm and 3pm. We recommend contacting us to confirm seat availability and current programme.

Venue Type:

Museum, Gallery

See also

Opening hours

Tues - Sat
10.00 - 17.00

Admission charges

Entry to the Central Museum is free.
There is a small charge to visit the Planetarium, which is located inside the museum:
Adults: £4.60
Children/OAPs: £3.60
Family ticket (2+3): £15.50

Getting there

By Car
Central Museum is on Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea, positioned between Beecroft Art Gallery and Southend Victoria Rail Station. Driving on the A127 towards Southend (on Princes Avenue), turn right onto Victoria Avenue at the Cuckoo Corner roundabout. Go straight over two junctions: You will pass Priory Park and Prittlewell Church on your left. After passing the Civic Centre and Courthouse buildings on your left, take the next left onto Gt. Eastern Avenue. Take the first right and bend right, up the ramp, into the public car park. The car park is Pay & Display. Beecroft Art Gallery is to your left as you exit the car park - Central Museum is the next building.
Please note, access by foot from the Pay & Display car park is by steps only. Disabled parking is available behind Central Museum: When you turn right into the car park, instead of bending right up the ramp into the P&D park, continue straight, behind the gallery and into the Museum parking area at the very end of the road.

By Rail
The nearest station is Southend Victoria, on the Liverpool Street line from London. As you exit the station, turn right onto Victoria Avenue. You will see Central Museum immediately on your right.
If you are arriving at Southend Central, on the London Fenchurch Street line, the museum is roughly a 5-10 minute walk away. Exit the station and once on the High Street, turn left. Continue straight to the end, taking the path between the Odeon and New Look towards Southend Victoria Station. Cross the road, carrying straight past the station and Central Museum will be immediately on your right.

By Bus
Multiple bus routes run regularly, with a major bus stop adjacent to Southend Victoria Station.

Collection details

Archaeology, Archives, Weapons and War, Natural Sciences, Costume and Textiles, Fine Art, Medicine, Music, Coins and Medals, Science and Technology, Social History, Land Transport

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
BIBA

BIBA

  • 28 May 2016 — 14 January 2017 *on now

This exhibition explores the iconic brand from its humble beginnings as a postal clothing boutique, to its unprecedented success and expansion into the world of home wares, cosmetics, and even food. Biba and everything associated with it became a lifestyle aspiration for nearly all teenagers and young adults during the 1960s and 70s. Biba was the brainchild of Barbara Hulanicki, a fashion illustrator whose desire to create affordable fashion for all, saw the development of a business that would change the face of high street fashion, lifestyle wares and shopping forever.


Displayed across the Beecroft Art Gallery and Central Museum, this will be a joint exhibition celebrating all things Biba, highlighting the brands reach from fashion to personal health and lifestyle wares. A local and prolific collector of Biba has kindly loaned the objects in this exhibition, emphasising the importance and relevance of this brand today.


With a completely new and unique atmosphere that appealed to all the senses, Biba was an experience that many will fondly remember. For those who are new to Biba, it will be an exciting and captivating journey through the history and character of the brand.
Enchanting and charismatic, Biba continues to make the mundane magical.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Free Admission

Website

http://www.southendmuseums.co.uk/whats_on/event/BIBA-Exhibition

Getting there

By Car
Central Museum is on Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea, positioned between Beecroft Art Gallery and Southend Victoria Rail Station. Driving on the A127 towards Southend (on Princes Avenue), turn right onto Victoria Avenue at the Cuckoo Corner roundabout. Go straight over two junctions: You will pass Priory Park and Prittlewell Church on your left. After passing the Civic Centre and Courthouse buildings on your left, take the next left onto Gt. Eastern Avenue. Take the first right and bend right, up the ramp, into the public car park. The car park is Pay & Display. Beecroft Art Gallery is to your left as you exit the car park - Central Museum is the next building.
Please note, access by foot from the Pay & Display car park is by steps only. Disabled parking is available behind Central Museum: When you turn right into the car park, instead of bending right up the ramp into the P&D park, continue straight, behind the gallery and into the Museum parking area at the very end of the road.

By Rail
The nearest station is Southend Victoria, on the Liverpool Street line from London. As you exit the station, turn right onto Victoria Avenue. You will see Central Museum immediately on your right.
If you are arriving at Southend Central, on the London Fenchurch Street line, the museum is roughly a 5-10 minute walk away. Exit the station and once on the High Street, turn left. Continue straight to the end, taking the path between the Odeon and New Look towards Southend Victoria Station. Cross the road, carrying straight past the station and Central Museum will be immediately on your right.

By Bus
Multiple bus routes run regularly, with a major bus stop adjacent to Southend Victoria Station.

Southend Central Museum and Planetarium
Victoria Avenue
Southend-on-Sea
Essex
SS2 6EW
England

Website

www.southendmuseums.co.uk

E-mail

museums@southend.gov.uk

Telephone

01702 212345

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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