Rural Life Living Museum

Pavilion at the Rural Life Centre
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The Rural Life Living Museum is a museum of country life founded in 1973 by Mr and Mrs Henry Jackson. In 1984 the administration was handed over to a charitable trust. The museum occupies ten acres of woodland and meadow and the exhibits are housed in a collection of purpose built and reconstructed historic buildings which include a prefab, village hall, cricket pavilion, chapel and schoolroom among others.

Venue Type:

Museum, Garden, parklands or rural site

Opening hours

Wed-Sun and Bank Hols 10.00-17.00 March to October
Wed & Sun only 11.00-16.00 November to March

Admission charges

Adults: £6.00
Concessions: £5:00
Children (5-16): £4.00
Family (2A + 2C): £18.00
Rustics: Free (enquire for membership details)

Additional info

Preserved two foot gauge light railway operates on Sundays. Our library and archive material can be made available to researchers on request.

The collection documents the changes in rural life over the period between about 1750 and 1960 in an area roughly encompaccing Surrey, east Hampshire, West Sussex and parts of Berkshire. Areas covered include all aspects of domestic and village life including agriculture, crafts and trades. Artefacts include buildings ranging from a prefab through a chapel and village hall to a corrugated iron school room.

Collection details

Agriculture, Architecture, Archives, Costume and Textiles, Industry, Land Transport, Medicine, Personalities, Social History, Trade and Commerce, Weapons and War

Key artists and exhibits

  • Wheelwright
  • George Sturt
  • Blacksmith
  • Ploughs
  • Trapping
  • Prefab
  • Victorian School
  • Light Railway
  • Chapel
  • Waggons
  • Wagons
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.

Education programme

This programme could be the focus for a day's visit (three to four hours). Suggested topics include Homes, World War 2, Victorians, Britain since 1948. Topics can be supported with demonstrations including wheelwrighting, blacksmith, tales of a school boy during the war, the Land Army, laundry and washday or a complete Victorian period school lesson. Topics are particularly appropriate to Key Stages I and II.

How to obtain

Contact Judy Hewins ( 0777 152 6889)
Free educational pack: School visits - museum entry children £3.50, accompanying adults free; workshops £15; loan boxes £10 + £5 returnable deposit. Any size of group - only one school on site at any one time.

Rural Life Living Museum
Old Kiln Museum Trust
Reeds Road
GU10 2DL



Education officer


01252 795571


01252 795571

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.