Blaise Castle House Museum

An exterior image of Blaise Castle House Museum in the sunshine
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Situated in the beautiful parkland of the Blaise Estate at Henbury - the Museum is situated in an 18th century house and holds most of the Museums Service's 30,000 social history collection.

Blaise has famous connections - it was immortalised by Jane Austen who described it as 'the finest place in England in her book Northanger Abbey.

The Museum contains exhibits of everyday life from centuries past including an impressive domestic equipment gallery, a Victorian toy room including the museum's popular model train collection, old period costumes, other items of everyday life and a beautiful picture gallery.

Blaise Castle House was built in 1796-98 for John Harford, a wealthy Bristol merchant and banker. He was also responsible for building Blaise Hamlet, to house his servants and tenants. At the same time the grounds were laid out by Humphrey Repton (1752-1818) a leading landscape gardener. Parts of Repton's designs still exist, notably the impressive carriage drive which winds its way from the house. The Regency architect John Nash was responsible for the addition of the dairy and the conservatory.

Venue Type:

Museum, Historic house or home

Opening hours

Thursday - Sunday: 11am - 4pm.
Plus Tuesdays and Wednesdays during school holidays and Bank Holiday Mondays.

Admission charges

No admission fee - donations welcome

Part of Bristol Museums’ Designated Collections related to Bristol’s role as a manufacturing city and major seaport is on display here.

Other parts of these collections can be seen at Bristol’s City Museum & Art Gallery, Georgian House, and Red Lodge. Please contact Bristol Museums for more information if you wish to see a specific item.

The museums were Designated in respect of outstanding collections relating to the City of Bristol, including topographical paintings and prints, maps and archaeological collections. The collections relating to the 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th centuries are particularly rich, and reflect the importance of Bristol in those centuries.

A History of the Blaise Estate features Humphrey Repton's Red Book, bound in red leather, detailing his plans to landscape the park. Bristol at Home Display, upstairs in the museum focuses on domestic equipment, including stoves, fireplaces, cooking utensils, vacuum cleaners and other everyday items.

The Costume Collection is the fourth largest in the South West, however limited space only enables a very small sample to be on display at any one time. The Picture Gallery added in 1832-33 is downstairs in the museum and was designed by Charles Cockerell. It is now restored to its mid-Victorian glory. The Toys Room includes many old dolls, board games and the popular model trains and is exceptionally popular with visitors of all ages!

Collection details

Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Costume and Textiles

Key artists and exhibits

  • costume
  • domestic interiors
  • toys
  • Designated Collection

Blaise Castle House Museum
Henbury Road
City of Bristol
BS10 7QS




0117 903 9818

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.