Bath Preservation Trust is offering FREE drop-in activities with entry at its historic museums No.1 Royal Crescent and the Herschel Museum during half term, designed to inspire creativity and keep those little minds thinking and learning. Children get free museum entry, and must be accompanied by a paying adult.
This year’s core programme theme across the museums is Conservation In Action; read on to discover how the Bath Preservation Trust team will be introducing this theme to its youngest visitors through interactive activities.
A few minutes’ walk from the popular playground at Royal Victoria Park, the Herschel Museum is one of the city’s hidden gems. In this museum, which occupies the former home of William and Caroline Herschel, visitors can learn all about the startlingly talented brother-sister duo, whom between them made several important discoveries.
Caroline made history by discovering eight comets and becoming the first female astronomer in the UK to be paid a salary, and William doubled the size of the known universe through his discovery of the planet Uranus in 1781, and there is so much more to their story. Stand on the flagstones upon which William once paced as he created his own telescopes by hand, and visit the music room to learn about William and Caroline’s other talents. You can even look up into the sky from the very garden from which William discovered the planet Uranus!
The museum recently acquired a handwritten draft of Caroline’s memoirs, thanks to generous funding from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF), ACE/V&A Purchase Grant Fund and the Friends of National Libraries, facilitated via Christie’s Private Sales. This item will be on show at the Herschel Museum from 11 February 2023 – another great reason to visit this year!
From February 11th to February 19th 2023 (excluding Monday 13th February), children can come and make a star viewfinder in the museum’s gallery, and take part in the National Star Count. Tying into Bath Preservation Trust’s Conservation In Action campaign, children will find out how light pollution can affect views of the constellations, and work out how many stars they might be able to spot from their own back gardens using their star finders!
A fifteen-minute walk away from the Herschel Museum sits No.1 Royal Crescent, where you’ll find a fascinating museum decorated and furnished just as it might have been during the period of 1776-1796. Featuring historic furniture, paintings and objects that reveal what life was like for Bath’s fashionable residents – both upstairs and downstairs – in one of the city’s most exclusive and desirable addresses, there is also an award-winning immersive experience (which can be enjoyed as part of a paid self-led or guided tour) that brings the house to life. Using a blend of film and sound, visitors will get a very real sense of what it would have been like to live there.
Running every day from February 11th to February 19th 2023, No.1 Royal Crescent will introduce children to the perils of pests and pollution with a special Conservator Challenge trail; follow the investigation trail round the house to find museum pests and hazards, and stop them in their tracks!
The fun and learning continues up in the museum’s Andrew Brownsword Gallery, where children can get creative with chalk marbling and make beautiful prints to take home; a great opportunity for them to have some fun and make some mess (that you don’t have to clean up!)
Booking is not required to enjoy these family activities, which are free with museum entry. Children will enjoy free museum entry when accompanied by a paying adult.
This year the museums will introduce an annual pass system, to simplify the ticketing structure and offer return visitors far greater value for money. The former Day tickets and on/off peak prices are being removed in favour of offering individuals and families a pass valid for a whole year, with children able to enjoy FREE entry. Priced at just £15 for an individual adult at No.1 Royal Crescent and £12 at the Herschel Museum or £22 for a joint pass, with under-18s going free at both venues, the new annual pass offers holders unlimited visits.
Claire Dixon, Director of Museums for Bath Preservation Trust says: “Our core programme this year is “Conservation In Action”, which provides an amazing opportunity for visitors to “see behind the curator’s curtain” and find out exactly what caring for artefacts in our museums involves – plus the chance to learn about the constant battles our curators face, from hungry insects to temperature damage! Our half term activities are a great introduction for children, and will hopefully inspire a lifelong interest in conservation and history. Thanks to our new annual pass system, children can now enter the museum for free with an adult. We are also able to offer sensory bags for neurodiverse visitors now, making our museum experiences more accessible than ever.”
For more information about these free half term activities (including times and dates) plus their host venues, visit:
www.no1royalcresecent.org.uk and follow @No1museum on Twitter, @no1royalcrescent on Instagram, @No1RoyalCrescent on Facebook and No.1 Royal Crescent on Tripadvisor.
www.herschelmuseum.org.uk or for updates in other dimensions follow @HerschelMuseumofAstronomy on Facebook, @herschelmuseum on Twitter, @herschelmuseum on Instagram and Herschel Museum of Astronomy on Tripadvisor