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Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is happening at Dorset Museum until the 29th October
Book tickets to ones of Dorset's finest attractions:
- All tickets include free return visits for the whole year!
- Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is taking place at Dorset Museum until the 29th October - all included in your standard entry ticket price
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History by the Jurassic Coast
Dorset is a place of historical significance that dates back 250 million years!
Ever since the days of the dinosaurs, right up to the works of Thomas Hardy, Dorset has been a significant area for British history and this is showcased excellently at Dorset Museum in Dorchester.
Divided into four main archive collections, each covering a different aspect of Dorset's history, you will really get a taste for the unquestioned historical significance of one of the south coast's finest counties.
People and Nature at the Museum
250 million years of history are brought to life at the Natural Dorset Archives, showcasing artefacts from as far back as the Jurassic Coast, plus the many discoveries that have been made there. One of the highlights is undoubtedly the Weymouth Bay Pliosaur, a 155 million years old Pliosaur skull, one of the largest and best-preserved skulls of its kind ever unearthed. It stands in the large collection of fossils that have been accumulated over the Jurassic Coast throughout the many years of discovery.
A long while after the dinosaurs had passed, the era of humankind began in Dorset around 500,000 years ago and this is preserved in the People's Dorset Archives. From the Bronze Age, to the years of Roman rule in Britain to the inventions and discoveries made in the 20th century and how humanity has shaped Dorset's history.
The Art of Dorset
At the Artists' Dorset Archives, you'll find beautiful galleries and artwork of some of Dorset and beyond's most notable names. Elisabeth Frink, Thomas Gainsborough, Alfred Stevens, Chaldon Herring, Sylvia Townsend Warner and Valentine Ackard are just some of the creatives who's works are on show in the Dorset Museum.
Finally, discover the life and work of one of Dorset's most famous names to have ever come from the county. Thomas Hardy. Uncover the stories behind the great novels and poems that he had penned as well as his life in Dorset and how it helped shaped the work he would go on to create.
A Must-Do in Dorset
The Dorset Museum is one of the very best ways to gain an understanding on what the county means to the past, present and future of those who've lived in it, or will go on to live there. By visiting the Dorset Museum, you will truly find out why Dorset is such a significant part of the country.
See additional information for accessibility
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How to get there
The Museum has a set-down point, but no car park. The nearest car park of substantial size is the Top o’ Town, just beyond the roundabout at the top of High West Street. It has six accessible spaces in total. The museum is a five-minute walk (500 metres) along High West Street on an even tarmac surface. The route is slightly downhill and is a short, smooth walk to the Museum. There is one road to cross on the way, using a Zebra Crossing.
Dorchester South Station – 12 mins walk
Dorchester West Station – 12 mins walk
There is no step-free platform access at either Dorchester station.
Find more information on using these stations, including accessibility, on their websites.
These buses stop outside the Museum entrance. Services can change, so please check with the bus companies before travelling.
- Bus 1
- Bus 2
- Bus 5
- Bus 6
- Bus 10/10A
- Bus 187
- Bus 701
- Bus X11
- Bus X12
- Bus X51
Here is some access information to help you plan. If you need other information or assistance at the Museum, please get in touch before you visit.
Assistance animals are welcome
If they need a water bowl, just ask the Dorset Museum Welcome Team.
Mobility scooters are welcome
If you need to store or charge your scooter during your visit, please ask our Welcome Team. There is storage and recharging for up to two mobility scooters or other mobility equipment. Please be aware spaces are limited.
Getting around the museum
• Step-free access to all areas apart from the mezzanine floor of the Victorian Hall.
• One 13 person passenger lift to all areas apart from the Library – internal dimensions 1100 x 2100mm.
• Platform lift to the Library, with space for one wheelchair 1100 x 1400mm.
• Stairs to all areas have handrails on both sides of the staircase.
• Seating in each gallery, some with armrests and backrests.
• Floor surfaces are firm and level.
• There are lower light levels in some galleries to protect light-sensitive objects.
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