“ Address: Drake Circus / Plymouth / Devon / England „
I would just like to write a review on the City of Plymouth Museum and Art Gallery, which is situated right in the city centre of Plymouth just on the edge of the main Drake Circus shopping centre. In order to find it, then make your way to the main university campus and you will find it right opposite you on the other side of the road right next door to the main Central Library building - the two buildings look as if they are one, and are easily seen as they are big grey buildings that are some of if not the oldest in this particular area (owing to the fact that most of it has been re-built in recent years).
98% of the buses in the area either stop right outside the frony door to it, or stop within about a two to three minute walking distance of it. The train station is only about five to ten minutes away on foot, and there are always plenty of taxis about should you wish to make use of them. In terms of car parking, there are plenty of off road car parking spaces but please do be aware that in Plymouth you will get charged at least £1.10 an hour!
The review will be split in to two smaller parts for the time being, as follows:
As with any museum in such a big city, this one is no different in hosting displays that are mainly about the local area and some of its more famous people. For example in recent weeks, there has been a display showing how Plymouth developed from a small fishing port many moons ago to now being ranked in at about number 15 in terms of the biggest cities in the UK. Past ones have also included a history of Dartmoor; Sir Francis Drake, The Pilgrim Fathers, and so on.
There are normally displays made up of local footage from the local archives and newspapers; any relics from certain periods of time (or a recreation of them should they not be around any longer), and things such as memories or other such articles and so on from local people. It is very much a people's museum, and tries to get the local population involved in any ways they can. For example, during the time when they had an exhibition on showing the Blitz they invited any local people who lived during that time to either come in and share their experiences or to write down something or record it so that it could be shown to those who came in to visit it.
As the name would suggest, then believe it or not but this is actually the section of the same building that hosts art exhibitions. Although there are many other much smaller art houses in Plymouth, this is by far the largest one but it tends not to host any one name at once but rather many smaller art exhibitions at the same time. Being in such a prime spot opposite the University (and also being directly across from the new Faculty of Arts building), it houses many exhibitions for them as well as for many locally known artists with their works being up for sale.
As well as being an art gallery, this section of the building has also recently become licensed to carry out civil ceremonies (weddings and civil partnerships).
Entry to both parts of the building are totally free (entrance is by the main entrance at the front of the building), with the museum being on the ground floor and the art gallery on the top floor - although they do ask for donations to help with the carrying on of the work that they do. The main entrance is only accessible by way of steps, but there are many signposts showing you where to go for disabled access which is to the rear of the property.
There is a small cafe and a gift shop, but I must tell you know that as with all places such as this the prices can be quite high for something that you could no doubt get a lot more cheaply elsewhere!
Opening hours are Tuesday to Friday 10 am until 5.30 pm; Saturdays 10:30 to 5:30; Sundays and Mondays closed, but Bank Holiday Mondays it is open the same time as Saturdays.
If you are looking for a cheap place to visit then I would say come here should you wish to find out a little bit more about Plymouth and its surrounding areas, but of course it is pot luck what is on at the time of you coming - so check out www.plymouth.gov.uk for further updates, but even so still come along and see what it can offer you!
Firstly I have to say I have never been a great fan of Museum's - I always thought they were for "clever people" and not me hehehe. But thin museum has changed my ways of thinking for good.
Location - Plymouth city Museum is located right opposite the University of Plymouth, which is on the main road into the city centre. It is about five minute walk to the main shopping centre and ten minutes from Mutley Plain, which is a strip of cafe's, shops, and bars. It is easily accessible for buses, cars, and taxis. It is also only about fifteen minute walk from the train station. Which means it is very central to most of Plymouth's key shops.
Museum - the Museum itself is a little dingy outside looking in, and you could easily walk past it on your way down to the shopping centre - however if you look up outside it, you will see how tall it seems to be! You walk in and you are in a small ish square room - there is a security guard sat in a carm the gift shop, a money collection place and the main stairway for you to walk up. You walk up the stairs and there are many different rooms you can walk into. There are six galleries available to the public and one that is constant is the art galleries - these are particularly good as I once went in there and one of the artists was actually there answering questions. In bigger cities such as London, this may be quite common, but it is pretty good especially as it is Plymouth. Alot of people living down this way want to try and put Plymouth on the map in the south west of the country!
It has recently been re-opened after a period of refurbishment. I find the museum very good, not only is it educational but it is interesting as well! All too many times these places seem a little boring at first, but i tell you this - they are not! I once went to an Egyptian exhibition here in the museum and it was so interesting and they had the timeline in the form of a story - that you walked around and it was so interesting. In fact Ancient Egypt is the next exhibition coming back to Plymouth, on November 29th, so I am very excited about that. They also have Beryl Cook exhibition coming at the end of November. Sadly she has now died but is a very famous artist from Plymouth, so also very excited about that.
Improvements for 2009 - As well as the six main galleries the Museum is extending and developing four new gallerieson the ground floor refurbishment scheme.
The only thing I am not keen on is that you have to walk through the gift shop before you can get to the exit - but i think this is a common trait of alot of attractions.
Opening times -
Tuesday to Friday - 10am to 5.30pm
Saturday and Bank Holiday Mondays - 10am to 5pm
Overall the Museum is easy to get to, and if you are unsure most people in Plymouth seem to know where the Museum is. If travelling in transport to the Museum it is on the roadside so taxis,buses and cars are all ok. Parking would have to be by the nearby Drake Circus complex, which is about £1.10 per hour, or 2 hours for £2.20.
I think a final note to say about this place is that it is FREE, which is good - we all love a bargin! It is important to say that the Museum is funded by Reniassance in the regions - and owned and operated by Plymouth City council - so they rely alot on donations.
Good if you......like somewhere free to go, educational, historical, relaxing, interesting.
Don't come here if you....aren't intersted in history.