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Museum Fundraising Campaign Takes a Step Nearer its £1m Target

The Bowes Museum has moved a step nearer reaching its £1m fundraising target after securing additional pledges of match funding for its endowment fund. The Museum’s fundraising campaign was launched in June 2012, following a successful award of £1m under the Catalyst Endowmentsprogramme; a joint enterprise between the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), and Arts Council England (ACE). Designed to bring new money into the cultural...

The English Rose - Feminine Beauty from Van Dyck to Sargent

The concept of the ‘English Rose’ will be celebrated in a major new exhibition, opening at The Bowes Museum in May 2016.   The catalyst for The English Rose – Feminine Beauty from Van Dyck to Sargent - a salute to 400 years of society beauties - is a portrait recently acquired by the Museum via Arts Council England, in lieu of inheritance tax from the estate of the Duke of Northumberland.   Olivia, Mrs Endymion Porter, by court painter Van Dyck, was painted...

Sex and the City meets Cinderella at The Bowes Museum

Powerful? Practical? Crippling? Comfy? - whatever your taste in footwear it’s certain to be reflected in The Bowes Museum’s major summer exhibition.   The Museum is the only UK venue outside London that will stage Shoes: Pleasure and Pain, organised by the V&A, which opens on 11 June 2016.   Taking the themes of transformation, status, seduction, creation and obsession, it features over 200 pairs of historic and contemporary men’s and women’s shoes by 70 named...

Boxes, Baskets & Bunny Ears Spell Easter Fun At The Bowes Museum

Egg-citement is in the air at The Bowes Museum, with a superb range of family activities on offer over the Easter holidays.   The action begins with a Family Fun Day on 28 March. In these egg-citing drop-in workshops you can celebrate Easter with a raft of craft activities including: Easter baskets containing a treat; cute lamb and chick pompoms; beautiful bunny ears and an Easter themed hunt. The event runs from 11.00 – 4.00 and is free for children, who must be accompanied...

A British Museum Spotlight Tour From Temple to Home Celebrating Ganesha

From Temple to Home: Celebrating Ganesha, a spotlight exhibition developed by the British Museum, opens at The Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle on Saturday 21 May 2016.   Hinduism is the third largest religion in the world with approximately 900 million followers. Among the many deities worshipped by Hindus, Lord Ganesha holds a special place in their hearts. The elephant-headed Ganesha is one of the most popular Hindu gods, and is known as the creator and remover of...

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The Bowes Museum is closed!


Due to the government announcement on Thursday 17 December, that County Durham is to remain in COVID tier 3 restrictions, The Bowes Museum unfortunately will remain closed to all visitors.

As we have already been shut for a number of weeks and there is much uncertainty around possible further restrictions, we have decided to use this period to undertake some work in Caf� Bowes, alongside performing some much-needed structural repairs to the building, notably to the windows. January and February are usually quieter times for the Museum, often due to severe weather, so we believe that this is the best time to carry out such works with the least amount of disruption to our visitors.

We have therefore decided to remain closed for a period of four weeks following any near-future tier 2 announcement from the government, as this will allow us time to deep clean the Museum prior to reopening our doors once again. We will, of course, keep you updated as the guidelines change.

Your ongoing support during these unprecedented times is hugely appreciated and we very much look forward to welcoming you back into the building as early as possible in 2021.

Do please remember, however, that the Museum�s park and grounds remain open to visitors from 10.00 � 4.00 daily, and that we are currently hosting a woodland fairy trail, clues can be found here.

We hope to be able to offer a few COVID-safe outdoor events over the coming months, about which we shall make further announcements as soon as possible.