Woodhorn Museum

A view along the main entrance path at Woodhorn with the old colliery buildings in the background
baby changing facilities icon Food icon Guided tours icon Shop icon Study area icon Wheelchair access icon

Woodhorn brings to life Northumberland’s proud mining heritage, alongside an ever-changing contemporary arts and event programme – making it a fun and cultural day out

Did you know that at its peak, over 2,000 people worked underground at the site? A whopping 600,000 tonnes of coal was mined from the pit each year.

Come along and visit the North East’s last remaining coal mining built heritage and check out our winding houses – including the most powerful winding engine in the region and the ventilation fan which took a direct hit, but survived the German bombing of 1941.

Our modern Cutter Building showcases our impressive banner collection, Coal Town exhibition and, of course, our iconic Ashington Group Collection. The mixture of the historic and the modern is something you can expect from all Museums Northumberland sites.

Be sure to take a look at the wall of the Cutter Building which features a moving sculpture made up of 98 birds, fashioned from moulded miners’ gloves – each of which sadly represent a life lost at Woodhorn Colliery throughout its history.

With so much to see and do at Woodhorn Museum, it’s a hands-on experience to remember

Venue Type:

Museum, Industrial heritage site, Gallery

Opening hours

Open: Wednesday through to Sunday (+ Mon & Tues in Northumberland School Hols)
10am - 4pm



Full details of opening times on www.museumsnorthumberland.org.uk

Admission charges

Membership charges apply

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.
*Membership is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Getting there

Just off A189 Spine Road and C1 National/Coast and Castles Cycle Route east of Ashington.
Nearest public transport Ashington Bus Station - 15 minute walk

Additional info

Accessibility

We want as many people as possible to enjoy a visit to our museums. We are always looking for new ways to improve.


We welcome your feedback, so if you have any suggestions for improving accessibility at our museums, please contact us via email at hello@museumsnorthumberland.org.uk


Assistance dogs are welcome at Woodhorn Museum. Family pets may also accompany visitors everywhere except inside the main building and the café.

The Pitmen Painters were a group of mostly miners from Northumberland who founded the Ashington Art Group in the 1930s and who took as their subject everyday life in their mining community. Woodhorn museum holds the main Ashington Group collection of their work.

Collection details

Archives, Costume and Textiles, Fine Art, Industry, Natural Sciences, Science and Technology, Social History

Key artists and exhibits

  • Pitmen Painters - Northumberland miners who founded the Ashington Art Group
  • Mining history
  • Oliver Kilbourn
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Coal Forest

Coal Forest

  • 27 October 2018 — 22 April 2019 *on now

Coal Forest will see the site transformed through a series of magical and thought-provoking art installations in our museum and colliery heritage buildings.

Neon lungs glow in the heart of the colliery ventilation system. A plainsong chant leads to a kaleidoscopic vision of coal; past, present and future. A curious, tree-like figure has taken root in front of the blacksmith’s forge. An unearthly stag is disturbed as he grazes in the depths of the mine. Extraordinary and ancient insects creep through the colliery site.

Coal Forest will be complemented by an exciting event programme that shifts with the seasons through Autumn, Winter and Spring.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Admission
12 months of unlimited free returns

16 and under: FREE

Adult: £7

Multiple Adults purchased at the same time: £6.50

Concession (OAP and student): £6

All Sites pass per adult: £16

Narbi Price, Untitled Trees Painting (QEII – for Craig)

Into the Woods: Open Exhibition

  • 16 February — 22 April 2019 *on now

Following the success of Woodhorn Museum’s inaugural open art exhibition ‘Open: Ocean’ in 2018, we are delighted to present ‘Into the Woods’, another fantastic opportunity to view work by our talented North East artists.

Winners:

Sarah O’Dowd- Autumn Glow- Overall Winner

Sarah Bradford- Glade- Highly Commended

Andrea Roberts- Lime Tree Cheeseburn- Highly Commended

The exhibition forms part of our ‘Coal Forest’ season, which will see the Woodhorn Museum site transformed through a series of magical and thought-provoking art installations in our colliery heritage buildings. Coal Forest will be complemented by an exciting event programme that shifts with the seasons through Autumn, Winter and Spring.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

The 'Into the Woods' exhibition is a free experience as part of your Annual Membership and kids go free.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

*Membership is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Website

https://museumsnorthumberland.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.
Coal Town

Coal Town

  • 16 February — 31 December 2019 *on now

Explore Coal Town, an engaging and interactive permanent exhibition. Through the eyes of the Ashington community, you’ll discover the true story of coal mining in Northumberland.

You’ll set off in 1918… walking to work… at one in the morning…

As the decades fly by, you’ll encounter some fascinating folk.

They’ll take you into their homes… on picnics… marches…even on strike.

You’ll cram into the ‘cage’ like a sardine, experience the joys of washday, learn to love leeks, discover the art of the ‘Proggy’, and the power of community values.

You’ll be amazed. You’ll be fascinated. You’ll be moved. Because this is one experience, you’ll never forget.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

*Membership is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

The Fallen Forest in the Tanky Engine Shed

The Fallen Forest

  • 16 February — 22 April 2019 *on now

Set in our stunning heritage Tanky Engine Shed, this immersive art installation will shift with the seasons through Autumn, Winter and Spring. Come along to help artist Bethan Maddocks transform the space, add your own artwork to the installation and create a magical tree-scape, inspired by the carboniferous forest of long ago.

Grow in springtime, and add your own artwork inspired by buds, seeds and sprouting ferns as The Fallen Forest bursts into new growth for the new year ahead.

The Fallen Forest is part of Coal Forest, our winter season 2018/19 at Woodhorn Museum. Coal Forest will see the Woodhorn Museum site transformed through a series of magical and thought-provoking art installations in our colliery heritage buildings. Coal Forest will be complemented by an exciting event programme that shifts with the seasons through Autumn, Winter and Spring.

Suitable for

  • Especially for children

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

*Membership is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Engine in the winding house

Dig Deeper! The Darkside Guided Colliery Tour

  • 16 February — 31 December 2019 *on now

2pm, Daily

Discover more about the darker side of Woodhorn Museum’s industrial heritage on these guided tours of our historic colliery site.

Explore the colliery buildings, learn more about how the site operated and find out about the daily dangers miners faced.

We’re always interested in hearing your stories too, so come along & share your own knowledge about our coalmining past.

Although not all of the heritage buildings included in this tour are fully accessible, our staff will adapt the tour so that everyone taking part can discover more about our industrial heritage. Please let the staff member leading the tour know how they can help.

Please meet at the museum Welcome Desk at least 5 minutes before the tour is due to start.

Tour numbers are limited to 12 per session on a first come first served basis

This tour takes place in heritage colliery buildings and although it is suitable for children and adults, we do ask that visitors take care and that children are supervised at all times.

Access to the winding gear demonstration part of this tour involves climbing steep stairs. We apologise for any inconvenience this causes, and those unable to climb stairs are welcome to observe the winding gear turning from the lower level of the winding house.

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

Membership is valid for 12 months and includes UNLIMITED return visits, but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

Website

https://museumsnorthumberland.org.uk

Pitman Painters

Spotlight Tour: The Pitmen Painters

  • 16 February — 31 December 2019 , *on now

Learn more about one of our unique collections on a free Spotlight Tour: The Pitmen Painters

Enjoy a bite-size tour to introduce you to the inspirational story of the Ashington Group, also known as the Pitmen Painters. The tour will also showcase a few highlights from this incredible collection.

Please note that at weekends and during Northumberland school holiday days the 3pm tour will be a Kids’ Spotlight Tour.

Please meet at the Welcome Desk.

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

Membership is valid for 12 months and includes UNLIMITED return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Membership Prices:
Adult: £5.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £4.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £4.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

Website

https://museumsnorthumberland.org.uk

Guy Tansley of ‘Bugs n Stuff’

Wild Wednesday

  • 10 April 2019 10am-3:30pm
  • 17 April 2019 10am-3:30pm

Get up close and personal with real creepy crawlies as we welcome Guy Tansley of ‘Bugs n Stuff’ to the museum from 10am to 3.30pm. Go wild on your own bug hunt (11am-12noon) and discover how to build your own insect friendly butterfly feeder (2pm-3pm). Meet at the Pick Sharpeners for the bug hunt and butterfly feeder.

Wild Wednesday is inspired by our Coal Forest art trail which includes sculpture of some giant bugs which evolved during the time of the ancient carboniferous Coal Forests.

Our Wild Wednesday activities are free as part of your Woodhorn Museum (or Museums Northumberland) Annual Membership where kids go free.

Suitable for

  • Especially for children

Admission

Membership is required for entry onto the museum site.

The is a free experience as part of your Annual Membership and kids go free.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

*Membership is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits but please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Website

https://museumsnorthumberland.org.uk

Getting there

Just off A189 Spine Road and C1 National/Coast and Castles Cycle Route east of Ashington.
Nearest public transport Ashington Bus Station - 15 minute walk

Woodhorn Museum
QE II Country Park
Ashington
Northumberland
NE63 9YF
England

Website

https://museumsnorthumberland.org.uk/

E-mail

hello@museumsnorthumberland.org.uk

Telephone

01670 624455

Fax

01670 626121

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