Christchurch Mansion

Christchurch Mansion
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This beautiful Tudor mansion is the jewel in the crown of Ipswich's historic past boasting over 500 years of history.

Explore the period rooms from the Tudor kitchen to the sumptuous Georgian saloon and the beautifully detailed Victorian wing and much more!

Gaze at the fine collection of art from Suffolk artists including the biggest collection of Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable paintings outside of London.

There is a cafe on site (seasonal opening times) where you can relax over tea or coffee, cakes or lunch or grab a picnic to eat in the park.

Mansion Tours
The Friends of Ipswich Museums offer free short daily tours of the Mansion called 'A Peep into the Past'. These take place at 11am, Tuesday - Saturday and 2pm on Sunday, March to November only.
Full tours can be booked at other times by contacting Christchurch Mansion on 01473 433554.

Venue Type:

Historic house or home

Opening hours

Open Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm throughout the year.
Please check the website for Christmas closing dates.

Admission charges

Free Admission

Additional info

The ground floor is accessible but unfortunatley there is no lift to take visitors to the first floor.

Christchurch Mansion is a 16th Century house built in an historic park. The rooms are furnished in various styles from Tudor to Victorian periods. Also in the house is the Suffolk Artists Gallery; which displays visual art from Ipswich Museums and Galleries Collection. Christchurch Mansion houses the most significant collection of Constable and Gainsborough paintings outside London.

Collection details

Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Maritime, Music, Personalities, Social History, Weapons and War

Key artists and exhibits

  • Constable
  • Gainsborough
  • Contemporary Visual Arts
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Christchurch Mansion

Leonard Squirrell 1893-1979 Part 1

  • 13 February — 7 August 2016 *on now

Christchurch Mansion is to play host to a celebration of Leonard Squirrel’s long career and includes four recently acquired pictures of East Anglia. The collection will be on display in the Wolsey Art Gallery from 13th February until January 2017.

Squirrell was born and grew up in Ipswich. At the age of 15 he started at Ipswich School of Art and went on to win a gold medal in the National Competition for Schools of Art with his set of drawings. He attended the Slade School of Art under Philip Wilson Steer and Professor Henry Tonks.

In 1929 he took a job etching at Ipswich Art School and stayed until 1940. Watercolour and etching were his favourite media. He would create sketches out of doors, marking them with copious notes on colour, composition and lighting. These sketches then formed the basis to create finished pictures in his studio. He exhibited regularly at the Royal Academy and the Royal Society of Painters in Watercolours and for 67 years with the Ipswich Art Club.

Squirrell was prolific in his output and was commissioned to illustrate books, produce railway carriage images, and calendars for companies. He even produced two books Landscape Painting in Pastel (1947) and Practice in Watercolour (1950).

In 1978 the Ipswich Art Club organised a major retrospective of Squirrell’s work in the Wolsey Art Gallery and he described Christchurch Mansion as an ‘elegant setting’ for his work. This display highlights the range of Squirrell’s work and in all media.

The Ipswich collection has up to 100 artworks by Squirrell and the first part of the display will be changed after six months to show a larger number of these pictures.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Leonard Squirrell 1893-1979 Part 2

  • 9 August — 31 December 2016

Our yearlong celebration of local artist Leonard Squirrell continues in Christchurch Mansion with a new selection of his work including two rare works in oil.

Suitable for

  • Any age
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.
Mansion Mayhem

Mansion Mayhem

  • 4 August 2016 10:30-11:30am, 1-2pm, 2:30-3:30pm
  • 11 August 2016 10:30-11:30am, 11:30am-12:30pm, 1:30-2:30pm, 2:30-3:30pm
  • 18 August 2016 10:30-11:30am, 12-1pm, 2-3pm, 3:30-4:30pm
  • 25 August 2016 10:30-11:30am, 1-2pm, 2:30-3:30pm

Join us at the Mansion for a summer of fun filled activities from creating fantastical creatures to learning Medieval archery. Booking is required.

Thursday 28 July
Mythical Beasts and Magical Creatures: Create your own masterpiece inspired by the fantastical creatures painted on Christchurch Mansion’s Hawstead Panels.

Thursday 4 August
Shadow Puppets Workshop: Join artist Ky Rice to make your own shadow puppets.

Thursday 11 August
Make Your Own Mosaic: Make your own mosaic at our drop-in workshop.

Thursday 18 August
Medieval Archery Training: Join us in Christchurch Park to learn about medieval archery and even have a go with a long bow.

Thursday 25 August
Telling Tales: Ever wondered how you get from ‘once upon a time’ to ‘happily ever after’? Join Mike Dodds, storyteller, and learn how to tell tales and spin stories.

Suitable for

  • 7-10


£3 per child

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.

More than a Visit

A group of secondary schools are taking part in our new scheme to provide a free artist led workshops and talks in secondary schools. The schools taking part are using the exhibition as course work and the workshop and talk are linked to the theme and techniques of the exhibition. Selected final year student artists from Suffolk College will deliver the talks and workshops.
To register your interest for future projects please contact the

Christchurch Mansion
Soane Street




01473 433554


01473 433564

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.