Back to school at major county tourist venue

The reopening of a major county museum will give families the chance to enjoy an educational day out – and shake off lockdown lethargy with a return to the classroom.

Justin Tose, Visitor Engagement Director, says the Ironbridge Gorge Museums – the first of which reopen on Saturday – have a rich heritage of firing up children's interest in history by showing them just what life was like for people living at the heart of the Industrial Revolution.

Blists Hill Victorian Town, Coalbrookdale Museum of Iron and The Iron Bridge Tollhouse will lead the July 4 reopening whilst the Museum of The Gorge, which suffered damage during the floods of February, will also open as a free entry visitor centre.

The reopening – in line with the Government’s latest coronavirus safety regulations – comes after the sites have been in lockdown for the past three months.

The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, a registered heritage conservation and education charity which cares for 36 listed buildings in the Gorge, says every possible measure has been taken to ensure visitors have an enjoyable day out.

Among the attractions at Blists Hill Victorian Town, families will get the chance to experience the inside of a Victorian classroom, see how Victorians lived and worked and also enjoy the sights and sounds of a Victorian Market.

Mr Tose said: "Coronavirus has had a real impact on children’s learning and we know that a visit to Blists Hill and the other sites we have open has a deep educational value which can inspire youngsters for years to come.

"The Victorian classroom will be open every day with a member of staff on hand to show visitors what school life was like for youngsters more than 100 years ago. We know that it is always one of the highlights of a day out at the site.”

Extensive work has been carried out to ensure the museums meet all the Government’s regulations, whilst still being able to offer a fantastic and educational day out.


Visitors are being asked to pre-book tickets and will be given hourly arrival times – though they will be allowed to stay on site as long as they wish.

New hand-washing sites will be in place across the sites and cleaning arrangements have been increased to offer extra peace of mind for visitors.

For more information on the reopening and ticket sales visit

Date: 01 July 2020 | Source: Shropshire Star

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