The Bowes Museum > Join & Support > Individual Support > Patrons Club

Become a Patron


The Bowes Museum has  transformed itself over the past decade with investment from Heritage Lottery Fund, private donors and Trusts and Foundations. It is a Museum of outstanding quality, displaying collections and programming inspiring exhibitions within a beautiful, purpose-built, Grade I listed building set in 23 acres of extensive parkland. Its’ progress has been remarkable, moving from a Museum faced with seasonal closure in 1999, to an engaging centre for learning and research today.

It is sometimes forgotten that The Bowes Museum is a charity and that it relies on funding and donations in order to continue its care for the collections, building and grounds as well as striving to display a rich and diverse exhibition and education programmes.

We would like to invite you to support the Museum by joining our exclusive Patrons Scheme.

With an annual gift of at least £500 you will be giving substantial and direct support towards securing the future of the Museum, enabling it to continue to operate as a world class institution and further develop its exhibitions, education programme, conservation and aim to become a centre of research and excellence.
In recognition of your support you will receive special privileges and exclusive access to areas of the Museum not usually available to the general public.

These include:

  • Invitations to a series of events led by the Director and curatorial team
  • Exclusive private views to exhibitions before the preview
  • Free exhibition catalogues
  • Credit on the website
  • An invitation to a behind the scenes tour of the Museum with an opportunity to interact with Museum objects.
We do hope you will take up this opportunity to become a more exclusive supporter of The Bowes Museum and look forward to seeing you at our private views and events. In so doing, you will be helping to secure the history of The Bowes Museum for future generations.

For any enquries please contact Alison Nicholson, Fundraising Officer at alison.nicholson@thebowesmuseum.org.uk or 01833 690606 ext 217.

The Bowes Museum grounds are open!


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. However, the grounds remain open to visitors from 10.00 - 4.00 daily, and we are currently hosting a woodland fairy trail, two spring trails and outdoor guided tours are available from 29 March 2021.

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 Café 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.

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.