Forge Mill Needle Museum and Bordesley Abbey Visitor Centre

Forge Mill Needle Museum
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The Forge Mill Needle Museum is an industrial museum of the Redditch needle making and fishing tackle industries, housed in the original mill buildings. It features water-powered working machinery in a unique needle scouring mill.

A regional centre for contemporary textiles, the Museum's annual temporary exhibitions programme includes at least one or two textiles exhibitions as well as local history and during the summer season, family orientated exhibitions.

The Bordesley Abbey Visitor Centre, which is set in an original reconstructed 16th Century barn, shows many of the finds that have been excavated over the years, and consists of a purpose built heritage centre with outer courtyard.

The exhibits show what archaeologists have discovered about the life of the Cistercian monks of Bordesley - from how they worshiped, to the clothes they wore, to the illnesses they suffered.

Bordesley Abbey had one of the earliest metal working mills in the country and you can see the preserved timbers from the mill on display, as well as many of the metal items that would have been made there.

The Visitor Centre includes a gift shop where a selection of souvenir guide books for both the Abbey and the Needle Mill may be purchased. A wide selection of needles are also available from the shop. A room in the Centre is available for hire to small groups. Please enquire for details.

The Museum site features a grassed area with picnic tables for visitors to use and enjoy.

Venue Type:

Museum, Industrial heritage site, Heritage site

Opening hours

February - March and October - November:
Tuesday - Friday 11.00am - 4.00pm
Weekends 1.00pm - 4.00pm

April - September:
Monday - Friday 11.00am - 4.30pm
Weekends 11.00am - 4.00pm

The waterwheel and original Victorian mill machinery will be working on Tuesday afternoons and weekends, and also for schools and group visits - barring mechanical problems!

Admission charges

Adults: £5.10
Seniors: £3.90
Children: £1.70
Family Ticket: £11.40
Reddicard Concessions
Special group package available on request.

Industrial machinery. Needles, needle packets and ephemera. Archives. Photographs. Fishing tackle. Fishing rods. Catalogues. Archaeology.

Collection details

Archives, Costume and Textiles, Industry, Medicine, Science and Technology, Social History, Trade and Commerce, Archaeology

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

SCOUR: THE HIDDEN LANDSCAPE

  • 14 June — 3 July 2016 *on now

Artists Keith Ashford and Elizabeth Turner explore Forge Mill’s needle collection and its unique scouring mill through the mediums of sculpture, video and sound.

The artworks create new links between the water- powered machinery and the fine needles and fish hooks made by Redditch’s famous local industry. The exhibition also aims to unravel some of the underlying threads that connect Forge Mill to the medieval landscape of Bordesley Abbey and its environment.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Museum admissions apply

Website

http://www.forgemill.org.uk

WAY OF THE WARRIOR: EPIC MOVIES AND ARMOUR

  • 23 July — 4 September 2016

This is a visually stunning exhibition of props and costumes that have been used in epic historical blockbuster movies, with a selection of warrior costumes and armour, and ‘screen used’ props from some of the biggest ‘sword and sandal’ epics of recent years, including Troy, Hercules, Alexander, Centurion, The Eagle, King Arthur, and the hit TV series Spartacus.

Highlights include the Oscar winning costumes from the multi award winning Gladiator (2000) displayed with the interior hangings from General Maximus’ campaign tent. There is the full suit of Sarmatian armour used in the climactic battle scenes of King Arthur (2004) – created by the legendary screen armourer Terry English, who worked on Excalibur and Aliens. Visitors will also be able to see the armour and costume of Spartacus as worn by Liam Mcintyre from the Starz series Spartacus Vengeance (2012).

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Museum admissions apply

Website

http://www.forgemill.org.uk

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.

NATIONAL ARCHAEOLOGY WEEKEND: A CELEBRATION OF BORDESLEY ABBEY

  • 16 — 17 July 2016 11am-4pm

Two days of fun archaeology themed activities for all the family!

- Medieval Knight's encampment
- Medieval story telling
- Masonry activity and demonstration at Bordesley Abbey
- Stone information and activity with Worcestershire Earth Heritage Trust
- Opening of stone seating on Abbey site

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

FREE
Includes entry into the museum

Website

http://www.forgemill.org.uk

ROMANS AND ANCIENT BRITONS

  • 6 — 7 August 2016 11am-4pm

Step back into an ancient world!

- Iron age British living history and combat
- Everyday Roman life
- Fully armoured Romans in their camp

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

ADULTS £2.00, CHILDREN £1.00
Includes entry into the museum

Website

http://www.forgemill.org.uk

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.

Victorian Working Life: From Workhouse to Needle Mill

Resource pack to support a visit, but can be used independently in the classroom. Contains information for teachers, worksheets, photographs and documents.

Publisher

  • Forge Mill Needle Museum
  • Redditch Borough Council

How to obtain

Charged. Contact the Museum for details - phone: 01527 62509

A Brief History of Needle Making Past and Present

Resource pack for students of the local industry and particularly useful for textiles students on City & Guilds courses.

Creator

  • Gloger, JoAnn
  • Chesters, Patrick

Publisher

  • Forge Mill Museum

How to obtain

£4.50. Contact the Museum - phone: 01527 62509

Archaeology and the Abbey Meadows

Resource pack for teachers, with line drawings, photographs, execellet ideas for activities in class and on-site.

Creator

  • Forge Mill Museum Trust
  • Hereford & Worcester County Museum Service
  • Wass, Stephen
  • Wass, Verna
  • Mead, Barry
  • Newman, Mark
  • Gaffney, Vincent
  • Ashby, Bobbie

Publisher

  • Forge Mill Museum

How to obtain

£2.50. Contact the Museum - phone: 01527 62509

Bordesley Abbey School - Visits Activity Pack (Ks2/3)

Activity pack to accompany a school visit, some suggestions of how it could be used independentley in the classroom. Contains colour photographs, worksheets and information for teachers.

Publisher

  • Forge Mill Needle Museum
  • Redditch Borough Council

How to obtain

Charged. Contact the Museum for details - phone: 01527 62509

Forge Mill Needle Museum and Bordesley Abbey Visitor Centre
Needle Mill Lane
Riverside
Redditch
Worcestershire
B98 8HY
England

Website

http://www.forgemill.org.uk

E-mail

info@forgemill.org.uk

Telephone

01527 62509

Fax

01527 464006

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.
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