Cotswold Museum Service cares for archaeological and social history objects in the Council’s collections. These collections are significant both nationally and internationally. Many of the objects are displayed at the recently refurbished and extended Corinium Museum, Cirencester.
The Museum Service also manages the Cirencester Visitor Information Centre which is located at the Corinium Museum, the Resource Centre (reserve collection store) at Northleach.
Our services inlcude:
- The provision of advice and information on archaeology and local history.
- The care and preservation of the District’s collections of archaeological and historic artefacts and documents.
- The provision of exhibitions and displays interpreting the heritage of the District.
- The provision of a museum’s education service to schools.
- The provision of a museum’s outreach service to the community, including workshops, children’s activities and programmes for lifelong learning.
- The interpretation of the collections through exhibitions, education programmes, talks and publications.
- The provision of an object identification service.
We have information and expertise covering our wide ranging collections which include objects relating to Roman Corinium and archaeological finds of all periods from the Cotswold area. We also have collections of local history. Whether you are a student, an interested local historian, or just curious about the history of the area, we can probably help.
Whatever you want to know, the more specific you can be about the information you seek, the better we can respond.
If you find something of archaeological or local historical interest we may be able to identify it for you. If you have something unusual that is outside our expertise we may refer you to another museum where someone will be familiar with the kind of object you have. Please note however we are not able to give valuations.
There is no charge for our object identification service, but we do need to look at the object itself. We therefore ask people to leave the item with us, so that our archaeologist can see the item and perhaps make further enquiries. You will be given an official receipt. When we have done our research, we send you a letter detailing the information we have found out about your object and informing you that it is ready for collection.
Cotswold Museum Service has many more items in its collection than it can display at any one time at the Corinium Museum. These items are held in our museum stores.
Our collections include thousands of items that have been dug up during archaeological excavations in the Cotswolds and many of the pieces of pot, bone and stone are simply not suitable to put on display. However these items can tell us more about what people were doing in Cirencester and the local area over the last 2000 years. We therefore carefully record them and store them so that people can come to look at them when they have an enquiry.
We also hold collections of local history from the Cotswold District including photographs, costume, social, and rural life material.
If you have a particular interest in an aspect of the history or archaeology of the local area it is possible to make an appointment to see a selection of the reserve collection. Appointments should be booked at least one week in advance.