Peterborough Museum & Art Gallery

Peterborough Museum Building
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Peterborough Museum is a fascinating and fun place to visit for all the family, right in the heart of the city centre. Having recently undergone a £3.2 million redevelopment (we open again on 31st March 2012) we're looking better than ever and 2012 is going to be an exciting year for Peterborough Heritage! General admission to the Museum is free, we hope you enjoy your visit, and that you will want to come back and see us regularly – there is always something different to see or do throughout the year. We are a Visit Britain Visitor Attraction Quality Assurance scheme attraction.

Priestgate dates back to the twelfth century (when the current town plan was set down by the monks of Peterborough abbey) and the first recorded house on the site was built in the 16th century (a grand mansion for the Orme family), although the current building dates from 1816. It was the town house of newly-weds, Thomas and Charlotte Cooke. In 1856 the Priestgate mansion was sold to the 3rd Earl Fitzwilliam who allowed it to be used as the city's first hospital, the Peterborough Infirmary, from 1857 until 1928. This impressive Georgian building became the museum in 1931 and an art gallery was added in 1939.

Many of the original Georgian features can still be seen today, as can traces of its use as a hospital - as part of the recent redevelopment, the original operating theatre has been restored and visitors will be able to visit it for the first time (the only one of its kind in the country)!

The Museum and its collections are owned by Peterborough City Council and are managed by Vivacity Culture & Leisure, a registered charitable trust.

Venue Type:

Museum, Historic house or home, Gallery, Heritage site

Opening hours

Open Tues-Sun 10.00-17.00
Bank Holiday Mondays – 10am– 5pm
Mondays (School holidays only) – 10am – 5pm

Closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Day & Good Friday. We are closed Mondays during term time.

Admission charges

Free admission; donations welcome.

Admission charges may apply to special exhibitions or events.

Getting there

The Museum is in Peterborough city centre, a very short walk (a minute or two) from city centre shops and the Cathedral. It is also a two minute walk from the bus station. Peterborough train station is on the East Coast mainline, and the Museum is a short walk (less than 5 minutes) along a signposted route from the station. Peterborough is conveniently located just off the A1. Follow signs towards the city centre and use city centre car parks. There is limited disabled parking available on-site.

The collections housed at Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery can be seen on display in the permanent galleries, in temporary exhibitions or by arrangement to view from the reserve collections.

There are over 212,000 objects, which have been collected over 130 years, now in the care of Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery. In 1968, the museum and its collections were presented to the City of Peterborough by the Museum Society (founded 1871, as the Peterborough Natural History Society and Field Club).

The collections cover a great many subjects and some are of national and international importance, such as the Norman Cross Prisoner-of-War Craft work, the Jurassic marine reptile fossils, finds from Roman Peterborough and the original manuscripts of the famous poet John Clare.

Collection details

Archaeology, Archives, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Land Transport, Literature, Maritime, Medicine, Music, Natural Sciences, Personalities, Photography, Science and Technology, Social History, Toys and Hobbies, Weapons and War

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

Fabric of Society

  • 15 November 2018 — 3 February 2019 *on now

The Fabric of Society exhibition has brought together a group of 20 women from different communities across Peterborough in regular textile sessions at Peterborough Museum since August 2018. There they have shared their traditional textiles and techniques, as well as their histories and importance. It has been an enlightening exploration of immigration and integration in our community.

Nationalities represented in the project include Lithuania, Portugal, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, England and Angola. The group also took the time to eat together during their meet-ups, with each member bringing traditional foods from their communities.

Our opening event on Thurs 15 Nov will reflect the spirit of the exhibition - taking place from 6pm to 8pm at the Peterborough Museum. There will be food and music from many of the communities involved; as well as an opportunity to chat to those who brought The Fabric of Society to life.

As the exhibition continues the display will build and change and the gallery will act as a work space. Members of the public will be invited to take part in sewing sessions with the group.

The exhibition is open Tue - Sun, 10am - 5pm at Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery until 3 Feb

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

FREE

Website

https://vivacity.org/theatre-arts/art-gallery/current-exhibition/

Open Exhibition 2019

Open Exhibition: Call For Entries

  • 11 January — 22 February 2019 *on now

The Open Exhibition is an open to all visual art competition. It offers artists the opportunity to exhibit as part of a professionally curated and public-facing show, taking place over all 3 gallery spaces of Vivacity’s Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery. Entrants also have the chance of winning £1200, £750, £500 or £250!

We look to create a dynamic show that serves as a platform in recognising and promoting, showcasing and rewarding the best selection of visual art from across the UK. Please note the submission process has changed. Entry Forms AND payment should be submitted by the entry deadline on the 22 February 2019.

Entries are accepted in the form of painting, drawing, photography, prints, sculpture and applied arts. Installation and performance art will be considered, but will depend on available gallery space. Each artist can submit a maximum of 3 works.
FIRST PRIZE MAXWELL MEMORIAL PRIZE £1200
SECOND PRIZE £750
THIRD PRIZE £500
EMERGING ARTIST £250


Entry forms are available to download here or can be picked up from Peterborough Museum, Central Library or Key Theatre

Maximum sizes of work(s)
For all 2D art: 2m x 2m incl. frame
For all 3D art, sculpture and floor based work: 2.5m x 2.5m x 2.5m (W x D x H)
Work must deconstruct into pieces no larger than 1.1m (W) x 2m (H)

For more information/enquiries regarding this exhibition please contact: arts@vivacity.org

For submission details please visit: vivacity.org/open2019

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram: @VivacityArts

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£7 per work entry (artists can submit up to 3 artworks)

Website

https://vivacity.org/open2019

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.
Page of Calligraphy

Foundational Calligraphy Workshop

  • 2 February 2019 10am-4pm

Discover the fundamental principles of calligraphy in this workshop perfect for beginners. Learn the foundational script using a dip pen and ink, and explore how to construct letters through demonstrations and individual practice. With personalised support, you’ll create a bookmark, greetings card or short quotation. Plus take home all the equipment you’ll need to put your new skills into action! Lunch is included in the cost of the workshop. Booking is essential. Call Peterborough Museum on 01733 864663.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children
  • 18+

Admission

£55 per person. Includes lunch.

Website

https://vivacity.org/whatson/heritage/historical-skills-workshops/calligraphy-workshop/

Getting there

The Museum is in Peterborough city centre, a very short walk (a minute or two) from city centre shops and the Cathedral. It is also a two minute walk from the bus station. Peterborough train station is on the East Coast mainline, and the Museum is a short walk (less than 5 minutes) along a signposted route from the station. Peterborough is conveniently located just off the A1. Follow signs towards the city centre and use city centre car parks. There is limited disabled parking available on-site.

Peterborough Museum & Art Gallery
Priestgate
Peterborough
Cambridgeshire
PE1 1LF
England

logo: Heritage Open Days 2014 logo: Museums at Night

Website

http://www.vivacity.org

E-mail

All enquiries

museum@vivacity.org

Telephone

All enquiries

01733 864663

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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