We have a lot for you to see, no charge in 2021 (but your £5 entry ticket lets you return as many times as you like for no extra cost, and accompanied children are FREE). So you can enjoy your visit and come back again!
As well as our special exhibitions, more permanent displays include:
‘Wallingford Castle: The Inside Story’ featuring many aspects of everyday life in the royal castle. These include details from recently translated medieval documents, and illustrations by June Strong, whose artist’s impression of the castle brings the buildings vividly to life.
Ben Taggart’s new scale model of the castle and north-eastern quarter of the town is based on thorough research from documents, excavations, geophysics and landscape archaeology. Adults and children alike can marvel at the size, structure, and impact of this spectacular building.
Other exhibits include finds from the castle and from the medieval cemetery of St Martin's (that lies beneath you as you shop in Waitrose), details of Wallingford Priory that once stood in the Bullcroft, and the story of Wallingford in the Civil War.
'At home with the Queen of Crime’ opens a fascinating window on the life of Agatha Christie at Winterbrook House, where she made her home with archaeologist husband Max Mallowan for 42 years, from 1934 until her death in 1976. It features personal letters and local memories. There’s also the 'Midsomer Murders' display, showing the Wallingford connections with this popular TV series.
‘Before the Town’ explores the newly emerging picture from development archaeology of the people who lived here before the town was founded. Children (and adults!) will love the archaeology sandpits, the Roman skeleton, the Bronze Age weapons and the ever-growing evidence of substantial Bronze and Iron Age communities.
Upstairs (not accessible this year):
The Wallingford Story takes you on a fascinating walk-through time, from the Roman period to the 16th century. It features the building of Alfred's Saxon burh, the Norman Conquest, the royal castle, Wallingford's many medieval churches, the coming of the Black Death, the Mayor and Corporation - and the Town Pillory, which towers above you!
Then a series of interconnecting room sets feature a shop, a pub, a workshop and a church, with a changing range of objects from the 17th to 20th centuries … not forgetting the ‘smelly-feely’ drawers and more!
Wallingford Castle: the Inside Story features a wonderful new painting - this one by one of our talented Museum volunteers, June Strong. June has magnificently tackled the huge task of depicting Wallingford Castle as it might have been in the late 14th century.
This new ‘artist’s impression’ not only includes all the latest interpretation of the layout of the buildings but brings to life many details gleaned from the newly translated medieval documents.
It makes a striking impact above the reception desk and features in many of the new panels in the exhibition which display a very accessible digest of the newest research into this vastly important royal castle.