Royston & District Museum and Art Gallery
Address: 5 Lower King Street, Royston, Herts, SG8 5AL
Telephone: 01763 242587 - Website www.roystonmuseum.org.uk
Museum Curator: Mrs Madeline Odent Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Museum Assistant: Amy Judd
Cleaner/Volunteer: Mrs Yvonne Stallard
All year: Wed, Thurs & Sat, 10 am - 4.45pm
(Closed over Christmas and New Year)
Other times by arrangement with the Curator/Manager.
Admission is Free
A Brief History
of the Museum
A Museum was first established
in Royston in 1856, when it was housed in the Institute Building (Town Hall),
but in 1901 the decision was taken to close it and the collection was
unfortunately sent for auction and dispersed. Many of the finest items were
bought by collectors, though some were later returned for the current
collection through the generosity of individual purchasers.
In the 1960s and 70s a group
from the local history society worked on bringing a collection about Royston
and the surrounding villages back together. A room in the town hall was
acquired to show these objects and arouse people’s interest in the town.
In 1984 the museum moved into
its current building, the old Congregational Church Schoolroom (5 Lower King
Street). The building had been empty for some time but during the Second
World War it had been used as a social club for the members of the American
Air Force 91st Bomb Group which was based at Bassingbourn.
The Americans installed shower facilities and a kitchen which were later
removed at the request of the authorities when the war was over.
Since 1984 the collection has
been continually added to. The museum achieved it Accreditation status in
2012 and this highlights the standards of professional practice that the
museum strives to maintain and improve on.
Today, the museum
hosts events and workshops throughout the year and encourages people of all ages
and backgrounds to visit the Museum, and experience its wonderful collections
collection is rich and diverse. On a visit to the museum you will explore the history of the area
from prehistoric times through to the present day. You will see everything from Stone Age axe heads to
Victorian farming equipment and from Second World War helmets to a Rubik’s
A Museum for
The Museum aims to
cater for all ages. We run a fortnightly Toddler music and Dance
workshops and for kids aged roughly 4-10 years we run regular craft workshops
particularly during the school holidays and on selected Saturday mornings. We work
with older children and young people on community projects, such as the Young
Curators Art Festival project and the Museums in Motion project, both of
which enable the young people to curate their own artwork and displays.
We run regular
craft workshops for adults ranging from willow weaving to rag rugging. We
also offer the chance to use our 1855 Colombian Printing Press, which was
once used to print the local newspaper, the Royston Crow. For all ages, we also carry
out reminiscence work and outreach in the community.
upstairs art gallery showcases local artists. With a varied
programmed of art exhibitions throughout the year it is a great reason to
keep coming back to see the talent on display.
Prehistoric sea creatures,
Romans, Black Death, a mysterious cave – all these and more can be found on the
Royston Tapestry. In 1991, the tapestry was started as a way to record
Royston’s history and to give local embroiders a place to showcase their skills.
Fourteen scenes have so far been stitched onto one continuous piece of linen.
Each scene depicts a significant point in Royston’s history illustrating the
town’s rich and diverse past.
You can currently see the fifteenth and final scene being worked on at
the museum. Our team of embroiders come in each week to add more stitches.
Completing a section, just a few centimetres square, can take several hours due
to the detail of the design and the skill required.
Once finished the tapestry will be over 25 metres long and will cover a
period reaching back 64 million years. It
is hoped that the finished tapestry will go on one-day exhibition at the Town
Hall, and then funds raised to display it in the Museum.
We welcome visitors
with pushchairs. Wheelchair access to the ground floor is via a ramp
at the front door. Please press the bell on the outside wall to let
us know if you need assistance. Our full Access Statement can be found on the
homepage of our website www.roystonmuseum.org.uk
More information about the museum’s activities and events can be found
on our website www.roystonmuseum.org.uk and our
Facebook / Twitter pages.