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Easter Fun with The Bowes Museum

Join our Easter Craft Along sessions online!

Although The Bowes Museum is closed, we didn't want people to miss out on the fun activities we had planned over the Easter holidays, so our education officer Julia Dunn has recorded the sessions she was going to run and they'll be available for everyone to join in with online.

There's a list of everything you'll need to take part with them, ranging from paper and pens to scissors, glue and toilet rolls, so you can check you're ready to go before they begin.

All the sessions will be available on the Museum's Youtube channel and linked on our social media accounts. 


Closure of all gates at The Bowes Museum

All gates to be locked due to vandalism and coronavirus

Closure of all gates at The Bowes Museum

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 shut on 18 March, benches have been damaged, the totem pole broken, branches pulled down and plants uprooted.

The Museum is working with police to find those responsible for the actions.

The closure also ties in with the latest goverment guidance to stay at home to help restrict the spread of COVID-19 and follows in the footsteps of other organisations who have closed gated parks and gardens.


Closure due to COVID-19

Museum to close from 5pm on 18 March 2020.

Unfortunately, due to the continuing development of the Coronavirus situation, we have made the decision to close The Bowes Museum from 5.00 this evening (Wednesday 18 March) until further notice. This includes the galleries, shop and Café Bowes. The park and gardens will be open to pedestrians and outdoor activities will be made downloadable for you to enjoy whilst taking some time out amidst these uncertain times. The health and wellbeing of both our customers and our staff is our priority. 


Paul Scott: New American Scenery

4 April - 6 September 2020

Paul Scott: New American Scenery

New American Scenery showcases the latest ceramic works by the contemporary Cumbrian artist Paul Scott, featuring works of historical transferwares that have been updated for today's audience.

Scott spent five years investigating early blue and white transferwares that were shipped from Staffordshire to the United States in the 19th century.   

He works with familiar blue and white ceramics, which were available cheaply so more commonly used than collected, to tell modern stories based on his trips around America.

He reworks antique wares, erasing, adding and recreating new patterns by reusing cut and broken fragments or adding newly printed decals.

The exhibition will allow visitors to see the contrasts between the old and new shapes and forms and think about decoration and what it means.

Picture © John Polak


blimey! Lucretia opening soon

7 March - 10 May 2020

blimey! Lucretia opening soon

An exhibition which explores the representation of women in culture is set to open soon at The Bowes Museum.

The blimey! collective, a group of female led Darlington artists, took inspiration from The Power and The Virtue: Guido Reni's Death of Lucretia exhibition, to delve into the story of the painting of Lucretia to create this immersive exhibition.

Working with groups of people from school age up, they used the act of sewing onto cloth patches as a means to demonstrate reactions to the mythological tale.

Their work will be displayed on dozens of mannequins, which visitors will be able to walk among as they view the project. 


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Information about reopening


We are delighted the Prime Minister has announced that museums can reopen this summer. We understand you are excited at the prospect of visiting The Bowes Museum and would like to assure you we have been developing plans to welcome you back into our beautiful building by late August; we are working on vital social distancing measures so you, staff and volunteers can be confident of a safe environment which everyone can enjoy.

We take pride in offering a relaxed and enjoyable day out for all the family, and with that in mind we are extending the Museum passes we have issued in the last year. Our exceptional Norman Cornish exhibition will continue until Autumn 2020 and we are planning to release details of a packed events programme, including the Christmas Market, over the coming weeks.

In the meantime the grounds of The Bowes Museum are open to be enjoyed by walkers and cyclists, in line with the government guidance on COVID-19. The parkland can be accessed through the front pedestrian gates between 10.30-4.45 daily. We would like to thank everyone for their continued support and understanding, and ask people to respect social distancing guidelines when they visit.

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