It’s curious, it’s quirky, it’s packed to the rafters with diverse objects with a surprise in every cabinet and around every corner. It’s no wonder that Bexhill Museum has such a varied assortment of delights – it’s been around for 105 years.
Whether you’re a local person or a visitor who knows nothing about the town, don’t think there is nothing here for you. The two most common comments in our visitors’ book and online are “I didn’t realise there was so much in it” and “It’s a little gem.”
Four distinct themes
The original gallery has now been joined by three others – the latest being opened in September 2019. Each has a different theme and children are well catered for in each gallery with free quizzes to encourage them to look and find.
We are also getting a name for ourselves among the model railway fraternity with two layouts linked to actor Eddie Izzard, a local lad and the museum patron.
Dinosaurs and natural history
We’re big on dinosaurs. The Sargent Gallery, named after a long-serving curator, has dinosaur footprints (found on the beach) and dinosaur fossils. See a bone from the world’s smallest dinosaur, found in Bexhill.
There are lots of natural history and geology exhibits, giving an impression of a curio collection assembled by Victorian or Edwardian collectors. Indeed, that is where a lot of the stuff came from in the early years of the museum.
One of the surprising sights is the original architects’ model of Bexhill’s De La Warr Pavilion. Until you see this you won’t realise the town has only half a Pavilion. One of the volunteers will explain it to you.
Costume and social history
The Costume and Social History Gallery has clothing through the ages including a dress worn by Queen Victoria. It has a chequered history.
In between the costumes are old household items and toys – and you don’t have to be too old to recognise some of them. Star Wars, anyone?
And what would a costume gallery be without the opportunity for children to dress up in various costumes? Let them take their pick.
Motor racing and model railways
Bexhill has a part in the history of motor racing in Britain. What is recognised as the first race in the country took place in 1902 along the seafront. Come and discover the reasons behind it. You can also see a reproduction of the car which won the race in the Motoring and Transport Gallery.
Here also is Eddie Izzard’s childhood train set where you can set two trains running. Again, one of our volunteers will explain the story behind the set. Another model railway is the centrepiece of the Bexhill in World War II Gallery. This shows Bexhill in December 1940 when the town was covered in deep snow.
Eddie’s father, John, was a 12-year-old at the time and always remembered the snow so Eddie had the idea of designing a railway layout as a tribute to him. A volunteer will give a presentation about the railway and other items in the gallery.
Oh, and you might also be treated to a volunteer playing on the museum’s 120-year-old piano.
|Ticket Type||Ticket Tariff|
|Adult ticket||£3.00 per ticket|
|Child 6-16 yrs||£1.50 per ticket|
|including students over 16||£2.50 per ticket|
|pre booked groups||£2.00 per ticket|
Note: Prices are a guide only and may change on a daily basis.
Nearest major road is B2182 (Bexhill seafront). On north side of West Parade by the clock tower.
Nearest station is Bexhill. Turn right out of station, down Sea Road to promenade. Turn right along promenade, past De La Warr Pavilion onto West Parade. Turn right on reaching clock tower.
|2019 (21 Jan 2019 - 15 Dec 2019)|
|Tuesday - Friday||10:00||- 17:00*|
|Saturday - Sunday||11:00||- 17:00*|
|Christmas opening hours (16 Dec 2019 - 1 Jan 2020)|
|Monday - Sunday||11:00||- 16:00|
* Closed Christmas Day.Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change
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