Topsham Museum

Food icon Shop icon Library icon Study area icon Visual disability facilities icon Wheelchair access icon

Topsham Museum is housed in one of a group of late 17th century buildings overlooking the Exe Estuary. Following completion of a stunning River gallery, the Museum was 'long-listed' for the Art Fund Prize in 2008.

Part of the Museum's focus is on Topsham's maritime history - one particular showpiece is the River Gallery, completed in 2007, featuring unique historic river craft. Visitors can also enjoy the furnished period rooms of the original house and the Sail Loft with its historical timeline of the town's general history and new display about HMS Terror, a Topsham built ship lost in the Artic. Other interesting exhibits include wildlife of the Exe Estuary, local trades and organisations and a small collection of memorabilia of the film star Vivien Leigh.

Topsham's position as a sheltered harbour enabled it to thrive as a port, a centre for fishing and shipbuilding. In a largely forgotten period the Exe was thronged with sailing vessels and its shipyards were major employers in the town and the trade at its height rivalled that of London.

The Museum incorporates pleasant gardens and a tearoom.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

26 March to 31 October
Sun Mon Wed Thu Sat (and Tuesday through August) 14.00-17.00

Group visits at other times by prior arrangement.

Closed: 1 November 2015 to 26 March 2016

Admission charges

FREE.

Getting there

Rail: Topsham Station, take Holman Way to Quay, turn left on Strand
Bus: T or 57 from Exeter or Exmouth
Cycle: Route 2

Collection details

Archaeology, Archives, Natural Sciences, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Personalities, Social History, Land Transport, Maritime

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

War Comes to Topsham

  • 26 March — 31 July 2016 *on now

One of our most successful exhibitions in recent years about residents who were away serving in far away places. The exhibition explores the social and economic life of the town through the background of the combatants and, on the Home Front, tells the stories of the local VAD hospital, the lady bell-ringers, the new allotments and the multitude of war-related fund-raising events. Information has been extracted from school records, local and national newspapers, letters and diaries written by local residents and from primary sources from the National Archives in Kew. Our aim has been to compile a file of information on each one of some 300 local servicemen who returned to the town after the War ended. We regard this as an evolving exhibition and we hope to involve and engage visitors and local people in telling the story of the Great War as it affected the Topsham community. There are also be some activities to interest children associated with this exhibition. Do come and see this new display and if you have any photographs or stories about your family members who served in WW1 we'd really like to talk to you. Please get in touch if you have any information or photographs you could share with us. Currently we have clipboards of information featuring fifteen Topsham residents but in our files you can find documents and information relating to the rest of the 300 local people who served in WW1. Please do come in and browse!, There will be a Lunchtime Lecture at the Museum on May 31st associated with this exhibition. It will be given by Dr David Parker who is the author of the book 'The People of Devon in the First World War', which won the 2014 W.G. Hoskins Prize. Estuary Players will be staging a play based on our research at Matthews Hall from 22-25th November and there will be two performances at the Museum during the summer on 9th and 23rd July. We are very grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund for supporting this project.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Salmon Fishing on the Exe

  • 26 March — 31 July 2016 *on now

One of our most successful exhibitions in recent years was on 'Salmon Fishing' and we are going to reprise the display boards in the Entwistle Room for visitors to enjoy - and maybe they will also see one of the salmon boats working on the Exe during the season. This exhibition will run to the end of July.

Suitable for

  • Any age
Devon Regiment Football Team WW1

War Comes to Topsham

  • 26 March — 31 July 2016 *on now

This exhibition is the result of two years of meticulous
research by our research team. They have investigated
the families of all those who served during World War I from Topsham and have some amazing stories of Topsham men in far-flung corners of the world. The exhibition explores the social and economic life of the town through the background of the
combatants and, on the home front, tells the stories of the local VAD hospital, women bell-ringers,new allotments and fund-raising events. Information has been extracted from school records, newspapers, letters and diaries.We are grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund for supporting this project.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Free entry

Website

http://www.devonmuseums.net/War-Comes-to-Topsham/Exhibitions/Topsham-Museum/Museum-Exhibition/

Shopping in Topsham

  • 30 July — 31 October 2016

Topsham once supported a multitude of different shops and tradesmen. Do come and see photographs from the Museum collection showing how these shops looked,where they were, what they sold and who ran them. We will be using many oral history recollections as well as census information, photographs, newspaper advertisements and even printed paper bags to trace the history of some of the buildings in Fore Street and High Street.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Black and White

  • 1 August — 31 October 2016

Late in the 2016 season we are presenting an art exhibition entitled 'Black & White' in the Tea Room. This will feature varied woodcuts produced by artists Hester Holman and Barbara Vincent and other contemporaries.

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.

Lunchtime Lectures 2016

  • 26 April — 25 October 2016 *on now

The Lunchtime Lecture programme for 2016 begins on Tuesday 26th April with a lecture by Bernard Hughes (County Councillor and Canal Enthusiast!) entitled 'The Inland Waterways of England and Wales' (see webpage), Lectures remain on Tuesdays. Doors open at 1045 with coffee available and the lecture begins promptly at 1130 or beforehand if all the seats are taken. Do come early as lectures are always very popular and seating limited. Briefly, the 2016 programmes is as follows. A full list in pdf format can be downloaded from the Museum website (Our Downloads). Tuesday 31st May: Devon during World War 1 - Dr David Parker, Historian, Tuesday 28th June: Finds from Shipwrecks in Devon - Charlotte Coles (Osteoarchaelogist, Exeter Archaeology), Tuesday 26th July: The Seaton Down Hoard - Thomas Cadbury, Royal Albert Museum, No Lecture in August, Tuesday 27th September: Ernest Shackleton and the James Caird - Professor Herbert Macgregor, academic and yachtsman, Tusday 25th October Topsham's Shops - Then and Now Mark Dant, Topsham Museum & Liz Hodges, Route 2 Bike Shop,

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Drawing for 10 15 year olds

  • 5 August 2016 10am-12:30pm

A practical drawing session designed for 10-15 year olds. More details shortly!

Suitable for

  • Especially for children

Getting there

Rail: Topsham Station, take Holman Way to Quay, turn left on Strand
Bus: T or 57 from Exeter or Exmouth
Cycle: Route 2

Topsham Museum
25 Strand
Topsham, Exeter
Devon
EX3 0AX
England

Website

www.devon.gov.uk/index/culturetourism/culture/museums_heritage/guide_to_devon_museums-3/museums_east_devon/mus_topsham.htm

E-mail

info@topshammuseum.org.uk

Telephone

01392 873244

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