Planning Your Visit

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Planning Your Visit


You are welcome to visit the Museum before you bring your class. If you would like to speak to the Learning Manager at this time, please contact the Museum in advance to arrange a convenient time to meet.

Health & Safety

To help you plan your visit, please download our school risk assessment here.

Copies of our Public Liability Insurance cover and Child Protection Policy are available on request. If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to ensure your pupils enjoy their visit and stay safe.


We recommend that you have one adult helper per six children so as to ensure effective use of the galleries and adequate supervision. We ask that adults supervise their groups at all times. Responsibility for the group remains with the teacher in charge.

It is also helpful if you have already split your group into the required number of smaller groups prior to the visit and each supervising adult knows where they are scheduled to be throughout the visit.


Coaches and Parking

Coaches can set down and pick up outside the Museum in Priory Avenue (as marked on the site map above). To avoid the school party crossing the road, the coach driver should pull up on the Museum side of the road. Our small, free car park with a disabled parking space is suitable for cars and minibuses. A drop off point provides easier access to the museums entrance.

To avoid walking through the Museum car park, please access the Museum and  Learning Rooms from the sign-posted footpath half way up the drive.


Please arrive 10 minutes before your programme is due to start so that the session can begin on time. When you arrive please make your way to the main Museum reception. The main Museum building opens at 10am; if you have booked a morning session a workshop leader will be waiting to greet you at the front of the Museum and direct you to the Learning Rooms.


The Museum building is very old and some rooms are small. Please do not let the children run or jump and please take care on the steep stairs. Please do not touch any of the objects on display unless you are invited to do so.


In fine weather we encourage groups to picnic in the Museum Gardens. The Learning Rooms can also be booked in advance. It is helpful if children bring their lunch in named plastic bags. During downtime pupils remain the responsibility of the teacher in charge.


Our large shop sells souvenirs, books and resources for project work. We also offer  souvenir bags that can be ordered in advance and collected during your visit.


The Museum has four toilets. One, which is accessible for wheelchair users, is located within our shop and cafe space, with an additional two on our ground floor. Our final toilet is accessible from outside, along the path that runs along the back of the main Museum building.

With large school parties, we ask you to plan time for “toilet stops” within small supervised groups. Children must be supervised when using the toilets. 


Please keep to the paths and lawns as some areas of the garden, particularly the slopes of the Motte can be quite unstable and the undergrowth may contain discarded litter that may be dangerous.

Additional Information

Trail Sheets

Please bring clipboards and pencils with you to use in the galleries. If you have booked a hands-on Museum session all resources for the taught workshop will be provided. Trail sheets are available on request. You need to photocopy this and bring it with you on the day of your visit. If on the day of the visit you need the Museum to provide these then there is a charge of 30p per sheet. 

You can also check our Resources page for other learning materials. 


If you have booked for a Town Trail session, please ensure the children wear sensible footwear, and bring weather appropriate clothes – raincoats, sun hats, sun cream, etc weather depending.


Unfortunately we do not permit flash photography in the Museum as the light exposure can be damaging to objects. If you wish to take photos you are welcome to do so without a flash. 

Any Questions?

If you have any queries, special requirements, or just want to chat about your options, please drop us an email on or call 01494 957210 and ask to speak to our Learning Officer.