Kent Museums
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Museums in Kent, including nonprofit organisations, government entities, and private businesses that collect and care for objects of cultural, artistic, scientific, or historical interest and make their collections or related exhibits available for public viewing

Kent Museums

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Bluetown
The heritage centre has evolved since 2005. It was a very small part of Bluetown Kitchens from 2005-2009. This happened when the owners discovered the building had been a music hall for 200 years & was bombed in the first World war so closed in 1917. Every item in the centre has been donated by local people. The building is being designed to link heritage and culture whilst being able to host events in any part of the centre.
The Heritage Centre contains:-
Artefact's about Sheppey and social history, a library of all the publications about Sheppey and its people as well as the general exhibits there are a few exhibition areas which change every month.
There is a research project linked to the impact the dockyard had on the island eventually there will be a room for people to trace their family but this is subject to funding.
Blue Town Heritage Centre also has a gift shop and a café - and happily caters for groups.
Crampton Tower Museum
The Crampton Tower Museum is a fascinating small museum is partly housed in a flint tower adjacent to the Broadstairs Railway Station. The tower formed part of the first Broadstairs public water supply and was put in repair by Thanet District Council.
Dartford Museum
The main display cases in Dartford Borough Museum run anti-clockwise around the gallery and follow the chronological story of the Borough of Dartford as revealed by archaeology, with additional social history items for more recent periods:
Deal Timeball
Deal Timeball is a Victorian maritime Greenwich Mean Time signal located on the roof of a waterfront four-storey tower in the coastal town of Deal, in Kent.
It was established in 1855 by the Astronomer Royal George Biddell Airy in collaboration with Charles V. Walker, superintendent of telegraphs for the South Eastern Railway Company.
Folkestone Museum
Folkestone museum depicts key moments in the life of this coastal town in South East Kent. With artefacts relating to smuggling, marine life, defense and the towns role as a popular holiday destination, as well as Folkestone on film and hands-on activities for children.
A new interpretation of the story of Folkestone with many hands-on features and archive film. There is an adjacent art gallery with a variety of temporary exhibitions. A heritage research room is also in the same building.
Herne Bay Museum
This coastal museum features the history of the Victorian seaside resort of Herne Bay and its surrounding area including finds from nearby Reculver Roman fort, mammoth tusks from local beaches and a Barnes Wallis Bouncing Bomb prototype from World War 2.
Themes include seaside holidays and attractions, the town's piers and the development of the resort. The art gallery has a regularly changing temporary exhibitions programme featuring both touring exhibitions and local artists.
Lullingstone Roman Villa
Take a dramatic new look at Roman life within the ruins of this affluent Roman home. Marvel at mosaic floors, wall paintings and some of the earliest evidence of Christianity in Britain. See the film and light show which reveals how Romans would have lived. The whole family will be fascinated by the objects that were found here including skeletal remains. Dress up in Roman costume, enjoy hands-on activities and step back in time.
Old Brook Pumping Station
The Medway Industrial Archaeology Group (MIAG) maintain and manage the Old Brook Pumping Station in Chatham, Kent. The station has a dual role as an interesting former public utility of the 1920's and as a building to house a collection of exhibits relating to the industrial history of Kent and especially the Medway Towns.
MIAG is a voluntary group, with a small number of members. It has a management agreement with Medway Council to develop the Old Brook Pumping Station into an industrial museum illustrating the development of industry and public services in the Medway Towns.
Romney Marsh Visitor Centre
An award-winning, eco-friendly vistor centre and nature reserve which is largely dune grassland with willow scrub and seasonal ponds. The centre has many intresting sustainable features including a 'living' sedum roof, rendered straw bale walls and a wood burning stove.
Canterbury Museum
Explore Canterbury’s underground museum built around remains of a Roman town house with mosaic floors, preserved where excavated. Descend 100 years with each step to Roman Canterbury’s level! Discover amazing finds from everyday Roman life displayed in reconstructions of a house and market, with a Roman mystery sword burial, intricate glass, silver spoon hoard and rare cavalry horse harness.
Enjoy the touch the past hands on area – handle Roman objects and be an archaeological detective! Suitable for all ages.
Highlights

Roman mosaic floors - Preserved where excavated
Roman hypocaust - Underfloor heating system, preserved where excavated
Digital reconstruction of the Roman town house
Rare Roman cavalry horse-harness fittings - One of only two sets in the world, displayed with reconstruction
Roman cavalry swords from probable double murder - Mystery burial of two Roman soldiers
Rare Roman tools - Roman spade, carpenter’s square & mason’s trowel
Roman building materials - Include roof tiles with Roman dog-paw prints
Roman painted plaster - Fragments with flowers, patterns & dancer’s feet
Finds from Canterbury’s Roman baths - Gaming counters, toiletry items & bath lining
Roman gods - Figurines including horse goddess & Gaulish male
Roman glass - Flasks, bottles & bracelets
Roman metal vessels - Ewers & dishes used in religious ceremonies
Roman pottery - Imported fine Samian ware & locally-made pots
Reconstructed dining room and kitchen - Showing real Roman pottery in context
Reconstructed Roman market & traders - Based on finds including shoe offcuts & pins
Roman bone pins - Finished & unfinished from a Roman workshop
Roman jewellery - Brooches, rings, pins & bracelets
Hoard of Christian silver - Hidden in dangerous times when the Romans left England
Cranbrook Museum
Cranbrook Museum set in a tranquil garden and housed in a delightful timber framed building dating from 1480 (which is an exhibit in itself) it contains over 6,000 exhibits encapsulating Cranbrook and the Weald of times past with survivals of Roman iron making and evidence of Cranbrook's prehistoric past. Explore Boot making and Broadcloth, Rope making, Hop picking. Costumes, Coinage, and old Kitchens with mangles coppers flat irons etc and all that went on in the past, don't miss the famous 19th Century African explorer Boyd Alexander's collection of British birds. And don't overlook the works of the highly talented Cranbrook Colony of Artists see how people lived in the 1800s through the eyes of Cranbrook's Artists-Hardy, O'Neill, Horsley, and Webster.
Guildhall Museum
The Guildhall Museum is a fun place where visitors can discover the history of Rochester and Medway in a museum for all the family. Colourful and attractive displays in two stunning historic buildings feature the local, social and maritime history of Medway. New gallery improvements planned for 2011include a completely refurbished introductory gallery, an improved River Medway gallery and a small hands-on Discovery Zone.
Maidstone Museum
Maidstone Museum was established in 1858 and now houses over 660,000 artefacts and specimens. It is housed in a charming Elizabethan Manor House, in the centre of Maidstone - Kent's County Town. Each gallery will fascinate and surprise; with a wealth of exhibits and objects to see and enjoy as well as regular storytelling and children's holiday activities.
Battle of Britain Museum
The most important collection of Battle of Britain artifacts on show in the country. The Museum was lucky to acquire one of the sites of Britain's epic struggle for survival in 1940, in what was the greatest air battle of all time. The airfield itself was the nearest Royal Air Force station to enemy-occupied France and only some ten minutes flying time away from the Luftwaffe fighter airfields in the Pas-de-Calais, in addition to which the airfield and surrounding district was subjected to long range cross-Channel shelling from the German shore batteries stationed along the French coast. Not for nothing was the Folkestone area known as "Hellfire Corner".
Despite the passing years today's visitor can still savour the atmosphere of the airfield's past with the landmarks and buildings that remain, acting as points of reference, whilst beyond can be seen the English Channel and the French coast.

The Museum is entirely self-supporting and stands or falls by the number of visitors it attracts. It is run by eight enthusiasts and volunteers. We are always pleased to accept donations of relevant items of the period for display.
Kent Battle of Britain Museum
Aerodrome Road
Hawkinge, Folkestone, Kent
CT18 7AG
Telephone: 01303 ‚Äč893140
The Old Lighthouse
The Old Lighthouse is an Historic Grade 11 building, listed in 1992 by Shepway District Council, recently celebrating its centenary. Opened with great ceremony by His Royal Majesty the Prince of Wales in 1904 after a 3 year build, it survived two world wars before decommission in 1960. For 56 years it provided a welcome landlight to vessels negotiating the perils of the English Channel. The Lighthouse features in Nickolaus Pevsner's famous "Buildings of Kent".
Roman Painted House
Some of the most extensive if stunted Roman wall paintings north of the Alps are on show at the Roman Painted House, although they're housed in an amateurish museum. Several scenes depict Bacchus (the god of wine and revelry), which makes perfect sense as this large villa was built around AD 200 as a mansio (hotel) for travellers in need of a little lubrication to unwind. Some things never change.
Tunbridge Wells Museum
Tunbridge Wells Museum & Art Gallery is a free, award-winning, family-friendly local museum offering visitors a variety of fascinating exhibitions and special events.
You can see the world’s largest public collection of Tunbridge Ware, enjoy our outstanding collection of costume, art and toys, and find out more about the local High Weald environment. Tunbridge Wells is also the home of the table football game Subbuteo and the Museum has a special display dedicated to this craze!
Brenzett Museum
Brenzett Museum is a unique collection of wartime equipment, remains recovered from aircraft crash sites and memorabilia collected and donated to the Museum since it's formation in 1972.
Since those early days voluntary members have attempted to improve the range of exhibits to embrace many aspects of the war. Brenzett is an Independent Charitable Trust dedicated to the memory of those living or dead, friend or foe, who served their country during wartime.

The Exhibition is located within the original buildings used as a Hostel for the Women's Land Army during the war, and part of the Exhibition is devoted to those ladies - some of their graffiti is still evident today!
Cobtree Museum
The museum of Kent life is a tourist attraction situated by the banks of the Medway it contains an oast-house, hop garden, 'hoppers huts' (temporary accommodation where hop-pickers used to live when they came down at the end of August or first week in September to gather the harvest), as well as a variety of farm animals. The focus is not just on hops, but also farming in general. In addition there is a herb garden, picnic area. The museum also contains a variety of historical buildings including Petts Farmhouse, Ulcomble Village Hall, Old & Water cottages, Cuxton Chapel and an Agricultural store, many of which have been saved from demolition and restored on site. The site exists to enrich peoples
understanding about the history and heritage of the Kentish countryside and the people who made their livings there.
The Museum takes you back into 150 years of Kent country life. Aiming to fulfil their goal of preserving Kent's countryside and rural heritage for the future, this 18th century farm is still an ongoing concern, and many country crafts and traditions are still practised here, including hops growing, harvesting and packing by hand.
You can visit Petts Farmhouse, Ulcombe Village Hall, Old and Water Street Cottages, Cuxton Chapel and a new Agricultural Store.
Dover Museum
Dover Museum is one of the oldest museums in Kent, founded over 150 years ago in 1836.
In 1991 the museum was rehoused in a new three-storey building behind its original Victorian facade. The history galleries tell the story of the development of the town and port with original objects, graphics and models.
Hythe History Room
An interesting local museum covering the history of Hythe, situated next to the Town Council Offices in Oaklands. Access (no stairs) is via the Public Library through an entrance hall used as an arts / crafts gallery.
Powell - Cotton
The Museum and House are set in the heart of the Quex Park Estate.
The naturalist and explorer Major PHG Powell-Cotton established a museum in the garden of Quex House to display his extensive, world-class collection of natural history from Africa and Asia.
Other galleries contain important ethnographical material collected from his world travels, including rare paintings, weaponry and textiles.
Six rooms of the Regency Mansion, the family home of the Powell-Cottons are open to the public in the afternoons.
Royal Engineers Museum
You’ll find something for all the family in Kent’s largest military museum and it’s only “Designated” collection. Exhibits of national and international importance are housed in the museum galleries, telling the story of Britain’s explosive military history from the 1700’s as well as a great deal of local history from the Medway area. See Wellington’s map from Waterloo in our French Wars gallery, or experience our interactive First World War trench.
Whitstable Museum
Dive in to maritime history and explore the town. The fascinating displays give townspeople and visitors an idea of why Whitstable is here and how it has changed over the years.
Its unique seafaring history is explored, including oyster fishing, diving and shipbuilding.
Discover local stories of seaside, floods, the world's first passenger steam railway, shopping, industries, newspaper cartoon characters Pip, Squeak and Wilfred, and memorabilia of resident Peter Cushing.
See the big red engine, sit at a Victorian school desk and hunt for fossil sharks teeth!
The Romans in Kent
The Roman invasions and occupation, although limited in terms of time and followed by a later withdrawal, had a deep impact on ancient civilisation in Kent. The roads, military and civil constructions left behind by Romans are still regarded as a step forward in organisation and building techniques. They can be encountered all over Kent, predominantly in and around Canterbury and Dover, settlements which date back from those times.
With the Roman invasion, a road network was constructed to connect London to the Channel ports of Dover, Lympne and Richborough. The London–Dover road was Watling Street. These roads are now approximately the A2, B2068, A257, and the A28.

Lullingstone Roman Villa
Located in the northwest of Kent, close to the village on Eynsford, on the bank of the river Darent, this villa was built in 75 AD (although its construction began around 82 AD) and is believed to have been in use until 420 AD. For travelling convenience, it was built with easy access to Walting Street, a key Roman road in the area which linked a number of towns.

Crofton Roman Villa
In relative proximity of Lullingstone Roman Villa, another villa was discovered in the small town of Orpington, in the London Borough of Bromley. It took decades for the whole site to be unearthed and the findings consisted of a large 20 room construction, only half of the rooms partially surviving to this day. The villa is believed to have been built around 140 AD and used for a few centuries, until 400 AD, by a family of wealthy farmers.

Roman Painted House
The name given to this ancient construction derives from its large murals, the remaining measuring about 37 square metres altogether. The house dates back to 200 AD, during the Roman occupation of England, and its function is still being debated. Whilst some historians infer it must have provided lodging for government officials, others interpret the abundance of Bacchic motifs on its murals as an indication that it was actually used as a brothel. In 270 AD, evidence shows that the Roman army itself demolished it in order to clear some space for another construction.

Richborough Roman Fort and Amphitheatre
Located in present day Sandwich, a fort built during the first Roman invasion in 43 AD, right after obtaining victory over native tribes in the immediate vicinity, Richborough Roman Fort was also preserved, developed and used in later times, akin to other Roman constructions of this type. It was initially built to celebrate the success of the military campaign and adorned with an arch which was a symbol of triumph and conquest. During the 3rd century, as the danger of barbarian invasion intensified, the fort was expanded and added a number of defensive structures, including ditches and ramparts.

Roman Lighthouse
Known for its key location throughout history, Dover was intensely developed during the Roman occupation, preserving many remains of ancient buildings to this day. Among other remnants of those times still stands a Roman lighthouse, one of the two constructions once erected on the highest grounds of the town, on its western and eastern side. The western tower has not survived and little can be seen on its site apart from ruins; the eastern one however remains as a 24 metre high structure, which is believed to be its approximate initial height. In later times it was converted into a bell tower for the church built nearby and still serves this purpose.

Regulbium
During Roman occupation, a number of forts were built in Kent, one of the most prominent being Regulbium, which lies in the vicinity of present day Reculver. It was strategically built during the reign of Emperor Claudius, after the invasion of England, with direct access to the Wantsum Channel, which led to the Thanet Island and had a distinctive role in commercial and military navigation. It had the classic square shape and organisation of a Roman fort and over the years was repeatedly added strengthening structures. A larger and stronger fort was later built around it, during the 3rd century, when the fort was intensely used, and a number of functional constructions are said to have been erected as well. However, the sea caused extensive damage throughout the centuries and little remains of what once stood there. Due to its tactical position, the fort was later used by the Anglo-Saxons as well, in centuries to come. In addition to using the fort for military purposes, they also built a monastery there.
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