Horsham Museum and Art Gallery

Museum outside picture
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Horsham Museum is situated at the head of the Causeway one of Sussex's and most picturesque streets of period buildings. The museum building itself dates back to the 1400's and is well worth a visit alone. Horsham Museum is a treasure house of local history housed in over 26 galleries. There are two small, very pretty walled gardens. The museum has a purpose built education room and talks are available for schools. There is a school loan and reminiscence loan box service. The museum has a programme of temporary exhibitions throughout the year in two exhibition rooms so there is always something new to see. Due to the age of the building, the first floor is not accessible to wheelchairs.


Venue Type:

Museum, Gallery

Opening hours

Mon-Sat 1000-1700

Closed: Sunday & Bank Holidays

Admission charges


Additional info

There is a public pay and display car park just to the rear of the museum.

Local history

Collection details

Agriculture, Archaeology, Archives, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Land Transport, Law and Order, Literature, Medicine, Music, Natural Sciences, Personalities, Photography, Science and Technology, Social History, Toys and Hobbies, Trade and Commerce, Weapons and War, World Cultures

Key artists and exhibits

  • Bicycles, saddlery, Shelley books, geology, costume, costume accessories, toys, kitchen and gardening, rural crafts and trades, Cabinet of Curiosity, crime and punishment.
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.

A Victorian Tale: Henry Burstow’s Horsham

  • 19 March — 1 July 2016 *on now

It certainly was the best of times and the worst of times for Henry Burstow: for, like many people living in the Victorian era, poverty was never far away. Burstow’s Reminiscences of Horsham was published in 1911, at a time when most books were written by the wealthy, the famous and the powerful. Yet Henry Burstow was none of these things: he was a poor, working-class cobbler, born in 1826. However, his lowly status betrayed the fact that he was a highly intelligent man blessed with a fantastic memory. Over the years, he used his extraordinary memory, skills and talents to benefit the local community, and later, to provide a wealth of memories that were captured in one of this country’s earliest oral histories. Given his legacy to Horsham, it is sad to think that such a vibrant and charismatic personality endured such financial hardship.

Drawing on Reminiscences of Horsham, this exhibition will provide fascinating glimpses into Henry Burstow’s humble world, against the backdrop of a captivating and colourful Victorian world in the ‘Reminiscences’ of those who lived around him. It will tell of some of the quirks of Victorian Horsham as remembered in his book, alongside some political and royal events of the era. Discover the rivalry between our local public houses, as documented by image and song, and be entertained by Victorian Horsham scandal; enjoy descriptions of some of our more outrageous yet colourful characters… learn what ‘beggar-pooking’ was, read about some of Horsham’s villains, and discover the stories of some of Victorian Horsham’s more eccentric individuals!

To celebrate Henry Burstow and his Victorian Horsham, this exhibition will feature the strange, the wonderful and the everyday. Living in poverty, mice were a huge problem when it came to storing food, therefore objects on show will include a mousetrap designed to kill 5 mice at a time – necessary, though a ghastly thought for most of us now! There will also be many original paintings and photographs of old Horsham on display, along with a generous helping of documents relating to his life and book, Reminiscences of Horsham.

This exhibition will also recall some of Henry Burstow’s involvement in bell-ringing: from cracked bells to the diverse social politics such as the rivalries of performance between bell ringing groups in the area. Possessing an extraordinary memory, our poor yet ‘noble artisan’ Henry Burstow also knew 420 songs by heart and could recite them on demand; his legacy as folk singer continues today, nationally.

A centenary edition of Henry Burstow’s book Reminiscences of Horsham containing many rare photographs and images to celebrate and commemorate his life is also being published by the Friends of Horsham Museum, in conjunction with this exhibition.

For further information please contact Jeremy Knight, Museum Manager

Suitable for

  • Family friendly



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.

Reminiscence Loan Box Service


Horsham Museum and Art Gallery runs a popular Reminiscence loans service, tailored for care homes and carers in the district. Please note, these are not suitable for loan to schools.

The Reminiscence Loan Boxes are loaned free of charge to residential homes, sheltered accommodation and any club for the elderly throughout the Horsham District. The boxes are also available to organisations for the elderly outside the District for an annual fee of £100. This fee allows you to borrow as many boxes as you like and also gives you a discount on the fee for Reminiscence Training.

How to obtain

Call us on 01403 254959 or email museum@horsham.gov.uk for more information

School workshops and Learning


School workshops are run by Miranda Mitchell, a freelance Education Officer who has worked closely with Horsham Museum over a number of years to tell, explain and explore fascinating stories. The workshops offer talks and handling sessions with a selection of high historical value items enabling greater interaction between the objects and students. Workshops can be cross-curricular and range from those designed for early years/reception through to Key Stage 4. Workshops can be held either at your own premises or, if you wish to increase the benefit to your students, at the Museum when a walking tour of the museum can be included.

A visit from the education officer will bring history to life, capturing the children's imagination. A detailed description of the Discover and Explore can be found on the Museum's website, where common themes are listed.

How to obtain

Contact Horsham Museum on 01403 254959

Horsham Museum and Art Gallery
Causeway House
9 Causeway
West Sussex
RH12 1HE




General email address for all enquires



01403 254959


01403 282594

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.