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Latest News


Heritage Lottery Fund Awards £10,000 To The Bowes Museum For Its Linking Children To Local Heritage Project

The Bowes Museum is delighted to announce that it has been awarded £10,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for its Linking Children to Local Heritage: Sharing the Museum’s Roll of Honour with Schools project. Awarded through HLF’s First World War: then and now programme, the project will focus on the impact the First World War had on the local area, taking the Roll of Honour as a springboard. Between September and November 2016, The Bowes Museum’s Education Team is working in...

October Half Term Fun at The Bowes Museum

There’s plenty of opportunity to keep the children occupied this half term with a selection of educational and eerie events taking place at The Bowes Museum.   Learn about the Museum’s First World War commemoration project in these WW1 Workshops on 24 & 26 October. Children will be able to see real artefacts from the conflict and make their own remembrance poppy to take home. These drop in workshops run from 10.30 - 4.00 and are free for children, who must be accompanied...

The Bowes Museum Start children on an amazing journey into the arts

The Bowes Museum is celebrating being one of just 10 UK arts venues to be chosen by leading arts education charity, Children & the Arts, to join the prestigious three year ‘Start’ arts programme this year.   Start, created and funded by Children & the Arts, partners arts venues with local schools to offer children specifically targeted opportunities to engage in creative activities and work with professional artists that inspire them and enhance their experience of the arts....

Kings, Queens and Selfies make for Half Term Fun at The Bowes Museum

Looking for inspiration to keep the children amused during May half term? Then check out what’s happening at The Bowes Museum.   Become Kings and Queens for the day on 31 May. Children can create their own royal finery during this family fun day by making a set of crown jewels; turning a cardboard tube into a king or queen; designing a unique coat of arms for their family, and much more. These drop in activities run from 11.00 – 4.00 and are free for children, who must be...

Antiques Roadshow Expert Officially Opens The Bowes Museum's New Ceramics Galleries

The Bowes Museum was delighted to welcome Lars Tharp, one of the longest serving experts on the BBC’s Antiques Roadshowprogramme, to officially open its newly refurbished ceramics galleries. The Museum’s ceramics collection is one of the most important, and the largest in scope and span, outside London, and the galleries – which contain rare and important pieces from the 16th to the 20th Century – now show it to best advantage. New and innovative standards of display...

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Information about closing


19 March 2020

Unfortunately, due to the continuing development of the Coronavirus situation, The Bowes Museum is now closed until further notice. The health and wellbeing of both our customers and our staff is our priority.

Where events can be rescheduled we will endeavour to do so but please be assured that all ticket holders for cancelled events have options on refunds and can contact info@thebowesmuseum.org.uk, however by not requesting a refund you would be making an exceptionally generous and much appreciated charitable donation to The Bowes Museum during these unprecedented times.

Whilst the Museum is closed, we will be working on other ways of sharing our story and collection via our digital platforms. Stay posted for online videos, conversations and more.

We thank you for your patience and your continued support for The Bowes Museum during this unpredictable time. We hope to come back to you with a reopening date shortly, for now, please stay safe and help protect the vulnerable.

25 March 2020

It is with great sadness that The Bowes Museum has taken the decision to temporarily close all gates to the grounds following a spate of vandalism around the parkland.

Since the Museum closed on Wednesday 18 March the benches in the story area have been damaged, the totem pole pulled over and broken, there have been attempts to pull out outdoor trail markers and branches have been pulled down and plants uprooted.

The Museum is working with the police to find the perpetrators of these actions. PC Michael Banks of Durham Constabulary said "This is a shameful piece of criminal damage within the grounds of a historical location in Barnard Castle anyone with information please contact Durham Constabulary quoting reference number DHM23032020-0189"

The Director of The Bowes Museum, Adrian Jenkins, said: "It is a shame that the actions of a few will have an impact on many but this closure also ties in with the latest government advice to stay at home to help restrict the spread of coronavirus and the Museum is following in the footsteps of other organisations who have closed gated parks and gardens.

There are tips from our education officer on the Museum's social media platforms for keeping the kids, and yourselves, entertained while in isolation and we'll be updating the website regularly with new and exciting information about the collection.

In the meantime, please keep safe and we look forward to welcoming you back to the Museum and grounds when it reopens."

You can keep up to date with developments here or on our Facebook and Twitter.

We’ll be back…