Maidstone Museums

Maidstone Museum
baby changing facilities icon Food icon Shop icon Library icon Study area icon Visual disability facilities icon Wheelchair access icon

Maidstone Museum is an award-winning museum, housed in a beautiful Elizabethan manor house, and is one of the best in the South-East. Highlights include a 2,700 year old mummy; Maidstone's local history; a fascinating journey through time to when dinosaurs walked the earth; one of the finest collections of Japanese art in the country; magnificent 'Old Master' oil paintings; and the splendour of the Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regimental Museum.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

Tue-Sat 10.00-17.00
Sun 12.00-16.00 (1 Apr- 31 Oct only)
Mondays closed

Admission charges

FREE ENTRY

Fine and Applied Art: Dutch and Italian Old Masters, British School, Victorian and Contemporary Paintings, Prints and Sculptures; Textiles, Costume and Accessories; Outstanding Japanese Collections; Furniture and Ceramics.

Natural History: Discover the biodiversity and ecology of Kent and its geological evolution over 300 million years.

Human History: Archaeology, Eqyptian, Medieaval, Victorian Explorers, Maidstone Connections: 'The History of our County Town'.

The Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regimental Museum: Uniforms, Medals, Weapons, Wars and Battles including WW1 and WW2.

Collection details

Archaeology, Architecture, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Natural Sciences, Social History, Toys and Hobbies, Weapons and War, World Cultures

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
WI Arts & Crafts

100 Years of the West Kent WI

  • 4 — 29 April 2018 *on now

The National Federation of Women’s Institutes is the largest women’s organisation in the UK. Its ideals of truth, justice, tolerance and fellowship are as strong now as in 1915, when the first WI was formed in Wales.
This exhibition celebrates 100 years of the West Kent Federation of the Women’s Institute, looking at what has been achieved locally and nationally through expanding their horizons and skills, whilst providing effective roles in their own communities.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/100-years-west-kent-wi/

Inking Woman

The Inking Woman

  • 5 May — 24 June 2018

This exhibition – the largest of its kind to date – demonstrates that women have always had a wicked sense of humour and a perceptive view of the world.
The work of 100 British Cartoon and Comic Artists comes together to reveal a wealth of women’s wit and insight, spanning 250 years.
Prints from the 18th century, caricatures, jokes, editorial and strip cartoons, postcards, comics, graphic novels and digital comics are all included.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Adults £4, Children (12 - 18 yrs) £2, Children under 11 Free, Family £10

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/the-inking-woman/

Viva Leone

Viva Leone

  • 30 May — 24 June 2018

'Viva Leone’ is a photography exhibition featuring sets and locations used in Sergio Leone’s classic spaghetti westerns. Once graced by cinematic legends – Leone, Eastwood, Van Cleef, Kinski, Ford and Bronson – many of these sights are remote, difficult to find and have fallen into disrepair; some may no longer exist, since very little effort went into preserving these historic sites. Their fading majesty is captured in traditional 35mm colour and black and white photographs. The photos have not been digitally altered in any way; they appear as they should.

Located around the Tabernas Desert (Almeria, Andalusia, Spain), the exhibition includes shots of the interior of a dilapidated church that inspired Federico Garcia Lorca’s ‘Blood Wedding’ and 35mm shots of Almeria. Each photo is accompanied with information and stills from the films, so fans can compare the ‘then and now’ and get a clear idea where many classic scenes were filmed. With westerns making a significant comeback, via TV and film, the exhibition is indeed timely.

Sales of photos will be donated to the photographer’s ‘Ben Nevis Challenge 2018’, in which he is taking on the highest mountain in the UK to raise funds for the National Autistic Society. Donations – of any amount – will also be greatly appreciated. For more information please see https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/cameron-straughan

We hope you will join us to celebrate a classic era in cinema while contributing to a worthwhile cause.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

FREE

Website

http://www.maidstonemuseum.org

Death on Binky

Paul Kidby: Discworld & Beyond

  • 7 July — 2 September 2018

Paul Kidby is best known as the illustrator of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld books. This exhibition showcases the wonderful book covers and illustrations for Pratchett’s novels, including favourite characters like Rincewind, the Wee Free Men and of course, Death!

It also reveals Paul’s own projects influenced by British folklore and landscapes.

Enjoy lots of Discworld-inspired activities in the gallery too!

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Adults £4
Children (7-18yrs) - £2
Family £10

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/paul-kidby-discworld-beyond/

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.
Sustainable Crafts

Sustainable Crafts (Spring)

  • 20 April — 11 May 2018 *on now

This is an exciting opportunity to give your trash a new lease of life. Join the eco-movement and create brand new products using common household waste items to help reduce waste in Maidstone! Transform old materials (newspapers, magazines, plastic bottles) into beautiful and unique items such as coasters, eco baskets and other cool products.

Maria Paez, MSc in Sustainability and craft-maker, has designed these workshops to guide participants through the creative process of recycling whilst exploring the collective understanding of sustainability issues. Participants will not only support environmental sustainability by reducing waste but also help to increase awareness of environmental issues.

All materials will be provided, but if you have a favourite shaped glass jar (1.5 litre capacity), please bring it along for Week One.

Week One – create a terrarium

Week Two – coil some coasters

Week Three – zip up a pencil case or tool case

Week Four – weave a basket

Sessions on 20 & 27 April, 4 & 11 May

Admission

£40 course fee

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/sustainable-crafts-spring/

Bag Yourself a Date

Museum Lates: Bag Yourself a Date

  • 26 April 2018 6-9pm *on now

Fall for a voice, a gesture, a perfume!

Draw your face on a bag (provided) and chat with each other in turn.

Each matching couple will receive a £15 voucher to be used in Wagamama, Maidstone

Over 18’s only

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£10 per person

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/museum-lates-bag-date/

Conversations

Conversations

  • 12 May 2018 10am-5pm

How would you like to access our objects? What stories would you like to tell?

Every half hour, a member of staff will give a 5 minute talk on their favourite things in the museum.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/conversations/

Inking Woman Talk

The Inking Woman Talk

  • 17 May 2018 6-7pm

Join The Inking Woman author and comic postcard tycoon Cath Tate, with cartoonists Wallis Eates and Rachael House, for an illustrated discussion about 250 years of women cartoonists working in Britain, and how Maidstone and Kent has provided local inspiration.

Enjoy FREE entry into The Inking Woman Exhibition before the event (5pm – 6pm)

Speaker biographies:

Wallis Eates is a comic artist whose autobiographical works have been shortlisted for the Broken Frontier Awards and the Myriad First Graphic Novel Competition. She works with many community groups; her comic book, Like an Orange, is about the brain injury survivors she met at the charity Headway, and will be published by Unbound Books in 2019. Wallis grew up in Maidstone and now lives in London where she is a Laydeez Do Comics co-ordinator.

Rachael House makes events, objects, drawings and performances. In the 1990s she was part of the thriving UK queerzine scene with her autobiographical Red Hanky Panky (1993). She has facilitated political zine making at various venues including for The Feminist Library at the Tate Modern. Her work has been exhibited at numerous galleries and institution. She lives in Kent and London.

Cath Tate set up Cath Tate Cards in the early 1980s, initially to produce political (anti-Thatcher) and feminist postcards. During the 1980s and 90s she published cards showing the work of many of the feminist cartoonists active at the time and conceived the idea of an exhibition and a book showing the work of women cartoonists. In the early 1990s she collaborated with Carol Bennett producing the FANNY and ‘Dykes Delight’ comics which showed the work of women comic artists. In 2017 she helped to curate ‘The Inking Woman’ exhibition at the Cartoon Museum in London with Kate Charlesworth, Anita O’Brien and Corinne Pearlman.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£6 per person

May half term

Half term activities

  • 29 May — 1 June 2018

Enjoy a week of creative workshops with a cartoon/comic theme this half term!

Tuesday – Create your own comic strip
Wednesday – Create a piece of pop art to hang on your wall
Thursday – Make a flip book
Friday – Become a Superhero by designing your own t-shirt with cape

Suggested age 4 – 11 years

Sessions at 10.30 – 11.30, 11.30 – 12.30 and 13.00 – 14.00

Suitable for

  • 5-6
  • 7-10

Admission

£3 per child or 2 for £5
T-shirt printing £4 per child or 2 for £7

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/half-term-activities-2/

History Mystery

Museum Lates: History Mystery

  • 31 May 2018 6-9pm

Meet the people who built, lived and worked in the Museum’s buildings over the last 500 years! Titled, colourful, eccentric and sometimes tragic, they’ll tell you their story.

First tour at 6.30pm, second tour at 7.30pm

Over 18’s only

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£10 per person

Exploring Textiles

Exploring Textiles in Design

  • 7 June 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 14 June 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 21 June 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 28 June 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 5 July 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 12 July 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 19 July 2018 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 26 July 2018 10:30am-12:30pm

Following her previous sell-out courses, artist Anne Delacour will lead another 8 week course exploring the use of textiles to create beautiful and crazy pieces to wear or to display.

Distress fabric, embellish it with faux diamonds, upcycle, bubble, stick, shrink!

Some materials provided but start rummaging in your recycling bins or charity shops for fabrics, ribbons, yarns, lace, broken jewellery, buttons, netting, etc.

Workshops are held in the museum’s light-filled Glassroom each week.

Participants will have the opportunity to display their work in the museum at the end of the course!

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£80 course fee

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/exploring-textiles-design-3/

Sustainable Crafts

Sustainable Crafts (Summer)

  • 8 — 29 June 2018

This is an exciting opportunity to give your trash a new lease of life. Join the eco-movement and create brand new products using common household waste items to help reduce waste in Maidstone! Transform old materials (newspapers, magazines, plastic bottles) into beautiful and unique items such as coasters, eco baskets and other cool products.

Maria Paez, MSc in Sustainability and craft-maker, has designed these workshops to guide participants through the creative process of recycling whilst exploring the collective understanding of sustainability issues. Participants will not only support environmental sustainability by reducing waste but also help to increase awareness of environmental issues.

All materials will be provided, but if you have a favourite shaped glass jar (1.5 litre capacity), please bring it along for Week One.

Week One – create a terrarium

Week Two – coil some coasters

Week Three – zip up a pencil case or tool case

Week Four – weave a basket

Sessions on 8, 15, 22 & 29 June

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£40 course fee

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/sustainable-crafts-summer/

Cartoon Workshop

Cartoon Workshops

  • 16 June 2018

The brilliant Gary Northfield, cartoonist and author, has worked with the Beano, Dandy, Phoenix and National Geographic kids magazines.

These workshops introduce his internationally renowned book series, Julius Zebra, and are full of drawing tips for budding young cartoonists from one of Britain’s leading illustrators. And you’ll learn lots of Roman and Egyptian facts along the way!

Morning workshop for ages 7 – 11 years (10.30am - 12.30pm)

Afternoon workshop for ages 11 – 15 years (1.30pm - 3.30pm)

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15

Admission

£15 per person

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/cartoon-workshops/

Kent Cherries

Museum Lates: Cherry Ripe & Kentish Wares

  • 28 June 2018 6-9pm

Kentish Wares: Come and explore a range of stalls selling crafts and delicious local produce to taste and buy. The market is free to enter.

Cherry Ripe (requires entry ticket): Hear from our curators about Maidstone’s role as the centre of Cherry Brandy production and from Brogdale, home of the national Heritage Fruit Collection, about cherry growing past and present.

Everyone will receive a free G&T, courtesy of Wagamama, using their newly created Jinzu Gin, made with sakura (cherry blossom), sake and yuzu

Over 18’s only

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

FREE entry to the Kentish Wares Market
Cherry Ripe - £10 per person

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/museum-lates-cherry-ripe-kentish-wares/

Ammonite

Fossil Roadshow

  • 30 June 2018 10am-3pm

Bring along your fossils to be identified by the Medway Fossil & Mineral Society. Handle amazing fossils, play fossil games and have your face painted ammonite-style!

FREE entry – small charge for some activities

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/fossil-roadshow/

Arts Award - Dinosaurs

Family Arts Award Day - Dinosaurs & Fossils

  • 30 June 2018 10am-4pm

We’re excited to offer children aged 5+ the opportunity to gain a ‘Discover’ Arts Award.

Investigate different art forms, find out about dinosaurs and fossils, create a piece of art and share it, all in one day!

Limited availability – just 15 spaces for children accompanied by an adult. All resources provided.

A certificate is awarded by Trinity College, London, on completion. Delivery takes 6-8 weeks and can be collected from us or posted out. A Museum certificate is awarded on the day.

Please bring a packed lunch or treat yourself to a meal in our cafe.

Suitable for

  • 5-6
  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15

Admission

£20 per child (accompanying adult free)

Website

https://museum.maidstone.gov.uk/whats-on/events/family-arts-award-day-dinosaurs-fossils/

Maidstone Museums
St. Faiths Street
Maidstone
Kent
ME14 1LH
England

Website

General Information

www.museum.maidstone.gov.uk

E-mail

General Enquiries

museuminfo@maidstone.gov.uk

Telephone

General Enquiries

01622 602838/9

Education Enquiries

01622 602853

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.
advertisement