Eden Camp, Modern History Theme Museum, Malton, N. Yorks.
Tel. +44 (0) 1653 697777 „
* Prices may differ from that shown
Eden Camp, Malton, Ryedale, North Yorkshire, Y017 6RT, We were on holiday at Flamingoland and needed a change of pace, a relaxing non white knuckle day so decided to have a look at Eden Camp which is at most 3 miles away.
Arriving with no concept of the museum or any inclination of what to expect we had an open mind but quietly expected a small low budget tacky museum with a few interesting features and decided it might be a relaxing hour.
On arrival the imediate impression was that we were wrong as the place featured a collection of world war 2 vehicles, tanks and two spitfires which our children were very interested in.
Entry is £5.50 per adult and £4.50 Child/Concession, is payable via car on entry, parking is generous and free.
The Informative map provided on entry explained where to start so we set off around the place in the well laid out and easily accessible for anyone route round the museum, there are 29 huts each with a different military subject and literally thousands of war time artefacts and newspapers to read, sounds and smells were pumped into many of the huts which brought the displays to life, the whole thing is quite stunning and our children left with more knowledge of our military history than they would get from 3 years of school, best of all they thoroughly enjoyed it, even our 9 year old.
The gift shop was much like any museum gift shop but everything was cheap and the provisions hut (Canteen) was very reasonable offering a good choice of foods to choose from.
This is a superb museum which chronicles our wartime history from ww1 to present day, it mainly features ww2 but the information and knowledge avaliable here should make it a must for everyone whether they are young or old, its clean, the staff are friendly and it took us 4 hours to complete the tour.
A surprisingly wonderful day out and we will be going again.
Eden Camp is a museum dedicated to learning about the Second World War. It is situated just off the A64 at Malton in North Yorkshire.
This is a great museum to visit with or without children. It is built in an old prisoner of war camp and the huts that were there have been transformed into a variety of different exhibits.
There are lots of huts that allow children to see what it would have been like to have lived in that period of time. The blackout hut and the blitz one are particularly good - the smell in the blitz one is awful and really gives children an understanding of what it was like. There is an old fashioned music hall and cinema which have showings throughout the day. The children will also like the assault course to run off some energy. I have visited with groups of school children and they have all come away with a much better knowledge of this time period.
For the adults there are also lots of very interesting things to see and learn. The huts have lots of written information about the exhibits there and you can spend literally hours there learning if you so wish (one adult I know has visited 3 times and has still not got round all the huts).
There is a brilliant gift shop which has information books and replicas of some of the things you will have seen on your visit. There are also rooms where you can go to eat your own food (unusual for a museum in my experience) or a cafe which serves food and drinks.
I can highly recommend a visit here whether you have children or not. It costs £5.50 for adults and £4.50 for children, senior citizens and the disabled.
This review is for the tourist attraction, Eden Camp. This museum focuses on the Second World War and how it impacted people and is built on a former prisoner of war camp which housed German prisoners of war from 1944.
When this was a prisoner of war camp, there were 33 different huts on the site. After 1949 the last Germans left the camp, and the buildings were used for a variety of uses, from lodging houses to car workshops. It was only in 1987 that a museum opened dedicated to the history of the Second World War.
Since the museum opened in 1987, it has won a large number of awards and has also grown to mean that all of the former huts and messes were open to the public. There are also other attractions such as the junior assault course and a dig for victory garden.
The contents of the huts are very varied, there are huts which focus on the rise of Hitler, the u-boat menace, the street at war, women at war, prisoners of war and many more besides. Huts 24 to 29 feature the periods 1919 to 1940 in one hut, and then one for each of the remaining years of the war in the others. If you are to explore the whole museum, you'll need several hours to do so, as there is lots to see.
The exhibits are fascinating to look around, and there are lots of traditional information boards, but there are also attempts to make the displays more interest. For example, in the World War One hut, there are smells and sounds in the hut to try and give some of the atmosphere of the times. Such attempts to add atmosphere really do work, and help make the museum that much more interesting.
The museum is geared up for children, and large numbers of educational visits are held. These can be quite a distraction if you're visiting the site without children, but the museum has provided separate areas for the children to eat and play when they're not visiting the exhibits, so the distractions aren't too bad.
There is a restaurant on site which proves to be good value. Each of the meals has a different name, such as Submariner's Feast (battered fish) and Doodlebugs (fish fingers) for example. Prices are all under five pounds, and although the food is basic it isn't over-priced.
The museum is open throughout the year, just shut for a few days at the end of December and for the first few days of January. The museum opens from 10am to 5pm, with the last admission being at 4pm.
Entry to the museum in 2010 is 5.50 pounds for adults and 4.50 pounds for children and senior citizens. Groups are entitled to a reduced rate. Note that the museum doesn't accept credit or debit cards for entry, which can be awkward if you don't expect it. There is a lot of parking at the museum, which is free of charge.
In summary, this is a superb museum with a lot to see and it's a great way of making history seem interesting and accessible to children. For adults the museum is equally interesting with such a broad depth of subjects covered and lots of material to read and displays to find out more about the past. A museum about the Second World War might not sound fascinating, but this is done so well, that it definitely works and is worth a visit.
Eden Camp is a former prisoner of war camp located a few miles inland from Scarborough in North Yorkshire. It might sound like an odd setting for a museum but with around 300,000 visitors every year it has established itself as one of the major tourist attractions in the region.
Built in 1942 with the specific purpose of holding Nazi prisoners of war from the Second World War the layout of the museum that we see today hasn't changed that much. There are still barriers across the gate where visitors now pay their admission fee and there are observation towers surrounding the perimeter, as you approach Eden Camp it really does feel more like you are driving into an army base rather than a museum.
Since opening its doors to the public on the 21st March 1987 Eden Camp has won numerous awards. In 1992 it won its first award when the Yorkshire Tourist Board voted it the "Visitor Attraction of the Year", they would later give it this same award in 1995, 1996 and 1998 and since then the awards have kept coming. In 1998 it was also awarded the English Tourist Board's "Excellence Award" gaining its first national recognition.
I had only ever heard good things about Eden Camp and when my parents visited recently they declared it as one of the best places they had ever been too. It is only about one and a half hours by car from my house so on Saturday 19th July 2009 I decided to see for myself what all the fuss was about.
Location wise Eden Camp is just off the A64 and it is very well sign posted from just about anywhere within the vicinity of York and also from the A1. A huge tower with its name sprawled across the top makes it visible from afar so there are really no excuses for not finding it easily. The final approach road is via a narrow dusty track that leads to the entrance barrier where all visitors pay their admission fee. The current cost is £5.00 per adult and £4.00 for children and concessions.
Once through the entrance barrier there is a large car parking area. This is scattered with the odd tank or other piece of military memorabilia to serve as a teaser for what is in store, but don't be fooled into thinking that this is just another museum full of war relics. Eden Camp is much more about the lives of the people during the war than the war itself and the story that it tells is more from a social history perspective rather than a military one.
The museum consists of a total of 33 different huts, each of which has a different theme to it and is more a less a separate museum in its own right. Visitors start at one end of hut 1 and leave it at the opposite end then move on to hut 2, unless you follow this recommended route in this order then believe me you are likely to miss some of the huts. Generally speaking the route is easy to follow but the huts are in rows and it can be a bit confusing when you move across to the next row so you do have to remember the last hut number that you have just been in. A few of the huts are used for different purposes, for example one is a toilet block and another is a cafeteria/canteen, but 29 out of the 33 huts do contain exhibits. In addition to the huts there is an exercise area where the prisoners would have been allowed some fresh air and there is also a garden full of vegetables, which would have been maintained by the prisoners and provided some food for the camp. Throughout the complex there are lots of benches to rest on and since it is all very flat it is especially well suited for wheelchair users and people with pushchairs.
The theme of Hut 1 is Adolf Hitler and the rise of the Nazi party in Germany. Starting with the economic collapse of Germany in the 1920's it tells the story of Hitler's election as the leader of Germany and the subsequent countdown to war that followed. It ends with the declaration of war and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's famous speech is played through loud speakers as you walk out of the hut and onto hut 2 next door. Outside the exit to hut 1 there is a large sign with a hand painted on it pointing to hut 2, which is literally only a few steps away.
Hut 2 is about the Home Guard and the role that propaganda played in the early days of the war. There is also a section about some of the young children that were evacuated during the war and since this is a rural area many of them ended up around here. Some of their stories are told and many of them are quite heartbreaking so make sure that you have your tissues handy because you will need them.
Having dashed around the first hut in about 10 minutes I realised that I could have easily spent an hour in the second hut and with another 31 huts to go I was sure that I wouldn't have time to see it all in one day.
I could quite easily describe each of the huts in details since each one is as I mentioned earlier more or less a mini museum in its own right. However I think most of you would have nodded off before you reached the end of this review so instead I'll just try and summarise a few bits.
There's an entire hut that is designed to resemble a German U-boat, another hut dedicated to the role that women played in the war, and another hut is all about the prisoners of war. This latter hut has photographs of some of the prisoners and their stories are told on placards that are displayed on the walls outside the cells in which they would have spent most of their time. It's another weepy area for those of you without a strong stomach.
In additional to the huts full of exhibits there is a small church, which was used for the prisoners to worship in.
One of the things that really brings Eden Camp to life is that each area is not only accompanied by sound but there are also authentic smells too. One of the areas about the blitz has an overwhelming smell of burning and as the dust clears you see piles of rubble and the flicker of flames. This part is quite eerie and is just one of many examples that demonstrates the detail of the special effects that have been used to re-create these scenes.
As you have probably guessed I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Eden Camp. I did manage to see it all (I think) but you do certainly need the best part of a full day so there's little point turning up mid afternoon. When I visited the weather was fine but since most of the exhibits are undercover it is the sort of place you could still visit if it was raining and it wouldn't be spoilt too much. I guess that you'd just need to dash from one hut to the next.
At the end of the final hut there is the customary gift shop, a tea room and a canteen. By the time we reached this it was ready for closing so I can't comment on the quality of the drinks or food although it did look reasonably priced and there were some wonderful names on the menu like "Churchill's Pie" and "Dambuster Stew and Dumplings".
Eden Camp is open daily throughout the year (with the exception of a few days around Christmas). It was interesting to note that all the children I saw seemed to be having a good time so its certainly a place that appeals to all generations, which did surprise me a little. If you get the chance it's well worth a visit.
Tel 01653 697777
I recently went to visit Eden Camp Museum in Malton, North Yorkshire with my friend who is a primary school teacher. Her class was planning to study Britain during World War Two the following term and she wanted to check the museum out before she took them there on a school trip. I have a background in historical studies so am always interested in trying out a new place - geeky girl that I am!
Eden Camp Museum is set on the site of a former Prisoner of War Camp. It had originally been built in 1942 and housed Italian and German prisoners until 1948. In 1986 a local businessman discovered that the camp was still intact and that 33 of the original huts that housed the prisoners remained in the same condition that they had been in when the prisoners left in the late 1940's. He bought the site and started the redevelopment of the area in to the museum that it is today.
Eden Camp is not like any museum that I have ever visited before. On arrival you immediately notice original military airplanes, vehicles and tanks restored from World War Two. This sight sets the scene for what you will find through the gates into the grounds of the museum. On entry to the site you see the huts that had formerly housed the prisoners in the 1940's. A perimeter fence surrounds the camp grounds which reminds you that this did use to be a prisoner of war camp and that you are standing amongst the grounds of a little bit of history.
Each of the 33 huts within the camp houses a different part of the exhibition. The huts are numbered and the idea is that if you follow them chronologically - you follow a historical timeline of events during the war. Each hut is fascinating and the exhibits have been recreated using lighting, sounds and smell to create very life like scenes.
Hut 1 - Charts the historical events leading up to the declaration of World War Two. It focuses on the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party and includes playbacks of the dramatic broadcast that announced the declaration of war in 1939.
Huts 2 and 4 - focus on the Home Front and Britain's preparations for war. This includes children being evacuated and clothing and food rationing being introduced. Hut 4 shows the introduction of gas masks and air raid shelters. A full sized example of a Morrison shelter is recreated in a 1940's front room demonstrating how they became commonplace.
Hut 3 - Focuses on the Merchant Navy at war and how the German U Boat proved to be a deadly weapon against great British ships. The whole hut is recreated to look like the insides of a submarine.
Hut 5 - is especially eerie and shows the true devastation of the blitz. In this hut you can actually hear the sounds of an air raid attack and actually smell the burning rubble. There is a very authentic reconstruction of a bombed out street whish shows the results of a direct attack on mainland Britain.
Hut 6 provides some lighter relief after the recreation of the blitz in Hut 5. This is the Eden Camp music hall where you can hear radio broadcasts which would have been popular during the period. There is also a wartime production of a puppet show in this hut - with performances shown several times a day.
Huts 7 and 8 - again focus on the Home Front during the war. There is a recreated street showing the types of goods which would have been on sale (which is a good way to demonstrate the limitations due to rationing).
Hut 8 focuses on the role of women during the war, we are shown a munitions worker in a factory and land army girls.
Hut 9 shows a bomber commander room which a huge map in the centre and staff around the outskirts planning their war strategy
Hut 10 focuses on the prisoners of war and gives a real insight into the history of Eden Camp and what it would have actually been like during the 1940s when it did actually house prisoners of war. You lean that Eden Camp occupied Italian and German prisoners from May 1942 to 1948. There were 64 prisoners to a hut (which gives you an idea of the condition that the prisoners lived in as the huts aren't actually that large!)
Hut 13 - gives a more up to date perspective on wartime focusing on conflicts from 1945 to the present day. Information on conflicts such as the Gulf war, Korean War and Falklands is given.
Hut 18 - consists of war news reading room - where newspapers from virtually everyday of the war can be browsed through to see what is happening.
Hut 20 focuses on conscription and national service as well as conscientious objectors and the role of religious organizations like the Salvation Army and the YMCA during the war.
Hut 21 looks at Civil Defense - you can see the tea wagon, the first aid post, fireman and the Red Cross all try to restore a sense of normality after an air raid.
Huts 24, 25, 26 and 27 - focus on the political and strategic aspects of World War Two and focuses on the major battles and campaigns and how events led to the war becoming global. This is an interesting section of the museum as instead of focusing on the 'people' involved in war - it is more about the involvement of countries. D Day, the Normandy Landings, the Balkan Campaign, Pearl Harbour, VE day, the Holocaust and the nuclear bomb are also included in this section.
There is also a model of the tunnel used by the escaping POWs (of which the film 'The Great Escape' is based.
The Eden Camp Chapel of Remembrance is located in Hut 29. This includes memorial plaques and allows visitors a quiet place to reflect on what they have seen in the museum.
Other amenities on the museums site are also housed in the huts. Hut 15 hosts the souvenir shop where you can buy various memorabilia and souvenirs from Eden Camp. Items such as postcards, newspaper facsimiles, books, as well as reproduction ration books and identity cards are all available. Huts 16, 17 and 19 all host a canteen, tearooms and a bar area. Huts 30, 31 and 32 are the mess huts where visiting school children can sit and eat their packed lunches.
The museum also has a large collection of military vehicles which are great to have your photo taken next to. These include Sherman tanks as well as Spitfire and hurricane aircrafts and V1 doodlebug flying bomb.
Wow! What a Place! This museum has won numerous awards for tourism and I can see why! The exhibitions are fascinating and very well put together. The moving figures, authentic smells and sounds utilize all your senses and transport you back in time to the British Home Front.
The exhibition is carefully constructed with historical accuracies - for example a reconstructed blitzed street and a living room of a typical 1940s home to name but a few.
Eden Camp isn't like other military museums in that instead of focusing on battles and military strategy - its emphasis is on the 'people' during the war. The majority of the huts examine life in Britain during the war and the sacrifices made by the people. Because the exhibits focus on people you can identify with them a lot more, feel sympathy for what they went through and admire their spirit and the way they all adapted and got on with what would have been devastating events in their lives.
There really is something for everyone here - young or old. It is very educational and very realistic and would certainly appeal to people of all ages.
The only negative I could find is that on the day I visited it was raining and I got a bit wet walking from hut to hut.
Location and Opening Times
Eden Camp is located in Malton, North Yorkshire. It is open daily from 10 -5 o'clock with last admission at 4 o'clock. The museum is open all year round from 2nd January to 23rd December. It costs £5 for adults and £4 for children and senior citizens - which I thought was a really good price for a museum of this calibre.
It takes approx 3-4 hours to get round but as this museum is extremely popular with visiting schools groups it may take a bit longer.
A Brilliant Place!
Opening Times:10 till 5pm with last admissions at 4pm, seven days a week, but the museum shut over the Christmas period from the 23rd December 2009 and re-open 11th January 2010.
Prices: £5 per adult, Senior Citizens/Children/Disabled £4, Under 3's free. They do not accept debit or credit cards.
Further information E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Internet Homepage: http://www.edencamp.co.uk Postal Address: Eden Camp Modern History Theme Museum Malton North Yorkshire YO17 6RT.
According to the map leaflet we were given on entering the former Prisoner of War camp, there are 33 huts. Be prepared for plenty of walking, as although there are plenty of huts to go in there are few seats (particularly if it is raining) other than in the coffee shop and if you go when the schools are visiting expect the huts, coffee shop, ice cream hut, and souvenir shop to be extremely busy. I suggest that you wear sensible shoes too, as there can be slippery surfaces in the huts (and outside particularly if it is raining).
We were staying at Cayton Bay, Scarborough and it was about 20 miles from the caravan park and took about ½ an hour to get there. It was very clearly marked on most of the main roads but a word of warning to the Satnav users out there, we put the Post code in and were sent down a very narrow bumpy muddy path past some terraced houses and into the back of beyond - which in a large 4x4 7 seater minibus was (for the passengers) not good news. Luckily we spoke to a man walking his dog who directed us back on to better roads. Try to stick to the main roads and you'll be fine.
On arrival at the park due to being just opened for the day, we were able to park quite close to the entrance. If you need to get back to your car, at any time, you can as it is part of the site - so you do not have to get a stamp or pass. This was a good idea of the planners. Parking is included in your ticket price - no additional charge.
The map provided has pictures of the huts on it, with a corresponding number on it, where each is. Unlike many theme parks, there are no rides at this attraction. There is a mini fort/adventure playground for the children and plenty of tanks, vehicles and airplanes to look at and pose in front of and you can pretend to be a sentry or in an air raid shelter.
Unlike Flamingo Land, we were able to push Mark around in his pushchair with no real problems at all. The only time it was a problem was in the coffee shop (no room to leave him on the end of a table without being in the way of other shop users), and in the souvenir shop - as we went in at a particularly busy time.
Although this is mainly of interest to the boys in our party (2 adults and a baby), the women were able to enjoy wandering around at leisure. Unfortunately the Music Hall wasn't doing performances on the day we attended (or perhaps was only available for the school trips) but apart from that we saw most of the huts. The two men went off on their own thing in such a rush that Richard left the lights on his car, so we had to call the AA out to rescue us when they wanted to go!
There are special events throughout the year - but we were not lucky enough to go on one of these days, which sounded great fun. This year (2009) there is a fire engine preservation group putting on a display in July and an All Services Parade and Service in September.
There is a baby changing room, toilets and a first aid room in Hut 14, which Michelle said was one of the best she'd seen whilst we were on holiday. Don't try visiting the Mess Huts - they are used for school trips to have their picnics in!
The map and website recommends at least 3 to 4 hours for a visit and I heartily agree that it could be worth spending all day at this location. The group I was with had enough at about the 3 hour mark but the weather played a big part in this.
If the weather had been fine we could possibly have played with Mark on the adventure playground - but this didn't seem to stop the school trip children! Michelle and I didn't let Mark play on this though because he was only 18 months at the time so would have needed careful supervision and we thought it was more suitable to older children
In Eden camp there are 28 huts that each represents a part of the war and the history supporting the war. It is on a 6 acre site and is great for all ages. It starts when you enter hut 1 the rise of Hitler- the announcement of war on the radio and women and children prepare for war. Hut 2- Shows children being evacuated, and home guard preparations. Hut 3- Submarines under attack, actually walk through a submarine and hear all the bombing. Hut 4- This hut shows air raid shelters, first aid, sewing machines and bomb shelters. Hut 5- The Blitz, this is the height of the bombing, it shows real life scenarios and you can really get a feel of what its like. Hut 6 - Musical hall, see old time shows. Hut 7- Fashion during the war, see what the make do and mend culture inspired. Hut 8- women's role in the war. Hut 9- Bomber command, see how they controlled bombing during the war. Hut 10- Prisoner of war, see the conditions prisoners of war were kept in actually at Eden camp. Hut 11- covering the main events during the war. Hut 12- food hut. Hut 13- Post war conflicts, show stories of people who served in Malaya, Korea, Kenya etc. Hut 14 - Toilet's. Hut 15 - Souvenirs. Hut 16,17,19- Provisions, Food canteen, Tea rooms, Cinema etc. Hut 18 - War news radio room, see the radio machines and how the worked. Hut 20- A trip down a coal mine. Hut 21- Civil defence, see the rescue workers and how they tried to restore normality after the raid. Hut 22- Forces reunion, old photos and letters from veterans.
Eden camp offers a great day out for the whole family and for £5 for an adult its a whole history lesson full of excitement. I first went when I was 10 and went back this weekend at 22 and loved every minute.
We visited eden camp for a day and found we didn't have enough time everything was so fascinating we each had our different favourite hut.
You will know when you have arrived at eden camp as you will notice the planes on display. From here we paid for our entrance from our car at the gate. We was then directed to a car park and shown where to park.
At the entrance is a display of planes and millatry vehicles to look at.
The camp is made up of a number of huts. This site was a former prisoner of war camp and the huts are what the prisoners would have been kept in. Each hut is set out differently according to the topic. Beware there are a lot of huts to get round so it can take a while. The huts are numbered and the theory is that you start from hut one and make your way round. There is a one way system that opperates in each hut.
The place can get crowded especially if there is a few coach parties. Also on the camp is a picnic area if you want to bring your own food. However this is not covered so I'm not sure what you do if it is raining! There is also a buildng next to the picnic area which houses both the cafe and shop.
I wouldnt recommend this place from young children as I think they would be bored. It might suit children who are of seconndary school age. We didnt relise how long it would take us to get round as we spent a while in each hut looking at all the information, so they were literatley kicking us out at 5pm. A warning comes on the tannoy at 4.30pm to tell you that the camp will be closing at 5pm.
This place is good value for money if you are into war stuff.
Eden Camp is a museum with a difference, it is situated between Malton and Pickering in North Yorkshire. and its theme is mainly centred around the second world war.
There is ample parking and it is disabled friendly, admission is reasonable family tickets are available
The camp is made up of a series of prefabricated numbered huts, each one covering a different aspect of the conflict.
Hut one is the announcment of the outbreak of war on the wireless, in the kitchen of a typical family, on Sunday September 3rd 1939, the characters appear lifelike, there is a tin bath in front of the fire, and you can clearly smell the soap , coal and smoke.
As you work your way through the huts, which incidently housed prisoners of war, you take a journey back in history with the sights sounds and smells of yesteryear. every hut has something fascinating for all ages, however due to explosive sounds and strobe lighting ,etc. not every hut is suitable for those of a nervous disposition although these are clearly marked.
The old time music hall is one not to be missed, usuallly there are two or three shows a day, and this is great family fun, I defy you not to join in, its highly amusing, your day wouldnt be complete unless you see this.
Feeling hungry? there is a canteen offering good wholesome food, if you want something hot, it seems to be busy no matter what time you go in, but the staff are quick aned efficient, nothing is too much trouble so you dont wait too long for your food.
Outside once again , your children will be delighted to join in the fun on the assault course, a great place to get your photo,s there are sentry boxes and exhibits, which also make for grat background pictures.
Of course no visit to a musuem is complete until you visit the gift shop, where all manner of war related items can be purchased and at poocket money prices for the children.
This place is a winner for me, I have taken my family several times, but if you can only manage the one visit, there is a very good dvd available to take home and show your friends. it is also an all weather location so dont worry too much if it starts to rain , you will still have a great time.
I would recommend Eden Camp as a really good day out for the family, although small children may find it a bit boring! But for the over-sevens it is very enjoyable, and is especially good if you have an interest in the second world war. Some of the huts are a bit scary for kids or anyone of a nervous disposition, especially the one depicting the Blitz. The entry price is very reasonable considering how much there is to see and do. The WWII themed cafe is also very good, and very well-priced for a family attraction, with good quality food and friendly service. The outdoor play area is very useful for keeping the kids amused while you take in the atmosphere! My husband and I are looking forward to returning there with our children this summer; we have a toddler in a buggy but this won't be a problem as everything is on one level, which also makes it an ideal attraction for wheelchair users.
Other places to visit in the area include Castle Howard, Scarbrough, Whitby and Flamingo Land.
This is the 4th time I have visited Eden Camp in since it first opened in the late 80's. I have taken push chairs and toddlers but this was the first visit with a wheelchair.
On arrival we were pleased to receive a discount on the already very reasonable admission and were directed to disabled parking spaces. The reason for this was they were wider than the others but as our wheelchair exited from the rear this wasn't an issue for us. The whole site is on the flat and there is no-where not accessible, unless you count the playground. The doors are narrow, but hey, its a POW camp. It just meant we opened both door and not just the one.
The canteen was busy but a chair was immediately whipped away to allow room for the wheelchair at the table. The food was very reasonably priced and the extra mug required to allow half a mug at a time to be lifted was no problem. I was even raced to the condiments to be handed extra napkins without hassle.
The toilets were a bit of a let down as the floor was wet. Dad was on hand to assist so there were no wet knees.
The gift shop ladies were very patient at the till and stood waiting to open the extra door to allow us to exit like royalty.
A very enjoyable few hours.
The first time I heard of Eden Camp was when two years ago my husband came home to say we were going on a day trip and our destination was Eden Camp at Malton, North Yorkshire. This pleased me as I knew Malton was not too far away from one of my favorite places, Whitby, more so that if there was time we would be going on from the Camp to Whitby to end the day out.
Having not heard of the camp I wanted to know more of what to expect when I got there so I asked questions of people who had already been and also looked up the history of the camp on the Internet. And I was surprised what I discovered.
The History of The Camp
A group of soldiers were sent to Malton in 1942 with orders to build a barbed wire stockade and set up tents within the site. These tents were to house 250 Italian prisoners of war who were to be put to work building a larger more permanent camp of 45 huts built from similar material to prefab housing. The Italians remained at the camp until 1944 and by this time all the huts were completed and the grounds set out with watch towers, barracks and mess huts after which the camp became home to 1200 German POWs until 1948.
During the 4 years of captivity the German POWs were set to work at local farms helping with the ploughing, sowing and harvesting but once their daily farm duties were done boredom set in as there was nothing to do and so many of the prisoners would hand craft objects from pieces of brick-a-brak, wood, bone or material given to them by the farmers and their families to make craft objects. One prisoner made a four inch long hand craved bone cribbage set complete with pegs in a tiny drawer which he later presented to the farmer who had been good to him. Other things made were knitted baby shoes out of strips of material or tobacco pouches, carved wooden cameo pictures and many other things which were displayed at the time of my visit in one of the huts.
In the mid to late 1980's a businessman noticed the disused camp and found that 35 of the original huts were still intact. He found this fascinating. So, what he did next was to buy the site and invest a large amount of money creating within the original camp grounds, the only modern history war themed museum with moving figures, smells, sounds and movement and much much more transporting you back in time to the 1940's.
Visiting The Camp
From my seat on the coach as we entered through the gates and into the car and coach park, my first thoughts were "No way am I going to spend the next few hours looking around this place!" Its looked like an old army camp with absolutely nothing of interest, until I spotted the Spitfire, a Hawker Hurricane and various other World War II vehicles. Now my interest was sparked.
We got off the coach and made our way towards the huts. There are 33 huts in all, neatly lined in rows, and in between each is a lawn-ed area with benches at each end of the lawns. On some of the lawned areas different types of World War II vehicles sit, such as tanks, lorries, artillery guns, search lights and many other military equipment of that era. Each hut has an entrance ramp back and front leading in and out of the series of huts which contained a difference exhibit of a wartime theme, however rather go into full details of each hut which would not only take an extremely long time it would also spoil it for anyone wishing to visit almost like telling you the end of a film I will only pick out a few that remain more vivid in my memory and only describing a little of what is in that hut starting with Hut 1.
This was the start in more ways than one. Here you found yourself looking at the front parlor of a house with the family sitting around a flickering fire listening to the radio and hearing Neville Chamberlain as he delivered the Declaration of War on Sunday September 3 1939. This was only the first hut and already I had been transported back into my Grandmothers parlor with the decor, the furniture, the style of dress and the homely smell of what I thought was bread baking bringing back memories of my childhood. That is only one of the scenes in this hut, there were many, many more and for you to discover should you decide to visit.
Here we are at a railway station. Children and mothers with babies are climbing into carriages while other mothers are standing aside and waving goodbye to their children. We are on the evacuation train taking the children and nursing mothers away from the city air raids to a safe haven. There are hundreds of children hustling around some are laughing as if on an adventure, some are crying and afraid to be parted from their mothers. London and many other large cities sent away their children to the countryside although in some cases they were sent abroad to countries like Canada, Australia and New Zealand and away from the war. It is sad to think that when it was safe, a lot of these children who returned no longer had homes or families as they had been destroyed and killed in the blitz.
The ground is moving, it is a slight rolling and swaying feeling. We are on a submarine and it is moving through the water. Suddenly the rolling gets stronger and you hear the sound of the depth charges: the submarine is under attack. The noise echoes around you, the lights are flashing on and off you can feel the rolling and shaking from a close collision with the mines. The experience you are feeling is only a reconstruction but it is enough to make your heart beat faster. To the brave submariners it was real and you have to wonder how did they feel? What were they thinking? How did they live in such a confined space without feeling claustrophobic?
We find ourselves back in the parlor of the house of Hut 1 only this time it has been bombed. There is a gaping hole in the ceiling and a bed is hanging through the gap, everything has been destroyed by the blast and the following fire. No longer is there a smell of baking bread just the smell of smoldering furniture and smoke. Out in the street are firemen aiming their hose pipes on the flames of burning houses. You can hear the sound of the bells from the engines and the hiss as the water hits the flames and burning rubble. Smoke is everywhere you look and then you hear that sound, it is the dreaded doodle bug. The sound stops. You wait. You look up and listen. Where will it drop?
You cannot enter this hut because you see everything through the windows. The hut is set out exactly as it was during the years of 1942 - 1948. We are at the Prisoners Hut where in each 64 men were housed. You peer into the gloomy room and see rows of crude bunk beds with their thin mattresses, hard pillows and rough blankets. The room is meagerly furnished. There are figures of prisoners sitting at tables playing cards or writing letters, other are standing around talking or just laying on their bunks. Everywhere is so depressive with the air of demoralized defeat.
Here are the toilets including facilities for the disabled, the First Aid room and the Baby Changing Facilities. The reason I have included this is not only to advise what facilities are available but considering the hundred of people using these facilities each day they were impressively clean. I was extremely impressed.
Several of the huts have been designed and equipped to cater for food. Hut 16 is the Prisoners Canteen (NAFFI). The opening hours are 10.00 am to 5.00 pm with hot food served between the hours of 11.30 am and 3.30 pm with generous and tasty portions. I thought I should list just a few of the meals available.
Soup of D.Day £1.55
617 Dam busters Stew & Dumplings £3.99
Churchill's Pie (Local Steak Pie) £3.99
Submariners Feast (Battered Fish) £3.99
POW Quarter Pounder (Beef Burger in a Bun) £3.20
Bombers (Jumbo Sausage) £2.75
All these dishes include a serving of chips or potatoes and Beans or Peas.
You can also buy snacks, deserts, coffee and soft drinks at reasonable prices.
Set meals for groups are available with prior arrangement except from mid June to mid September.
In the Garrison Bar there is a range of alcoholic beverages available
As I have already mentioned there is a range of World War II military vehicles on display and each one of them had a group of young boys admiring them, touching them and climbing onto them with their little eyes wide open, their faces glowing and a look of wonder upon them.
I stood there watching and wondering what each little head was thinking or what dream world they were in, as they pretended to be the driver or pilot of whatever vehicle they were exploring.
Throughout the whole site I could not spot a single step. All the ground were accessible to the disabled and young mother with prams and pushchairs. Available to those who require them, wheelchairs can be loaned free of charge but they have to be pre-booked before the visit. Also on loan are braille sheets and audio cassettes containing information of the site.
Quiet areas have been created for those visitors who require special medication during their visit and each area is equipped with a power point for use of ventilators. Dogs are allowed on the site as long as they are on a leash but they are not allowed in the cafeterias.
One other interesting point is the whole site is kept and maintained by Army Cadets including the cook house duties,cleaning and gardening and what a wonderful job they do.
Opening Times & Admission
The Camp is open every day from 2nd Monday in January to 23 December times 10.00 am to 5.00 pm.
Adults £4.00, Children, Disabled and Senior Citizens £3.00
Party rates for groups of 10 persons or more, pre-booked and payable upon arrival is reduced by £1.00 per head.
School Groups rates for each group of 10 Children to 1 teacher, pre-booked and payable upon arrival Children £1.50 and the teacher Free admission, (this is for supervision purposes)
There is a large free car and coach park very close to the camp gates.
Please note Credit and Debit cards are not acceptable, cash and cheque with bankers card only.
You must allow 3 - 4 hours or more for your visit to be able to explore and see everything available. All in all this camp caters for all ages and needs and is a great day out for all. To think my first thoughts of this place were "Eerk" but not now. I enjoyed my visit so much that I have been twice since.
Eden Camp is just off A64 from York to Scarborough at Malton, North Yorkshire at the junction of the A169 to Whitby and about 15 miles from Castle Howard and north of Stamford Bridge
Have you ever sat in an air-raid shelter, while bombs are dropping all around you? Or been in a U-Boat during a depthcharge attack? Or joined a Wellington crew over Berlin at the height of a bombing raid? I have experienced all of these in a single afternoon at a place called “Eden Camp” which is situated in Malton, North Yorkshire. It is a unique Museum where you will experience not only the sights and sounds, but also the smells of those unique, dangerous, times. Tableaux make full use of moving mannequins, and the skilful application of lighting, sound, and smells add even more realism and transport you back to the war years. Eden Camp was awarded the English Tourist Board Excellence Award 1998, for best visitor attraction in the Country. The camp is an original prisoner of war camp built in 1942, and consists of 29 huts. Italians were imprisoned at the Camp from 1942 to 1944, then Germans from 1944 to1948. The original huts have been retained to form the Museum, and your visit takes you to each in turn. As you pass through each hut, a different aspect of the story is revealed, starting with the rise of the Nazi Party, the early rallies and the outbreak of War. Highlights of some of the other huts include: The Home Front, The U-boat Menace, The Blitz, Bomber Command, Women at War, Civil Defence and POW’s, and finally VE Day with all the celebrations. In one hut is depicted a London street during the blitz. Smoke, screams and the smell of dust as you walk through. Bombs are exploding water mains rupturing and the emergency services fighting fires and rescuing trapped people, WOW. As we pass through the huts, other wartime topics are covered and these include: the home guard, the war at sea, rationing, evacuation of the cities, utility clothing, propaganda (ours and theirs), the street at war, land army girls, munitions factories, the emergency services, the rescue services, etc etc etc. I c
ould honestly go on for ages, as everything appears to be comprehensively covered. There is even a music hall with performances every 2 hours, where you are invited to watch a puppet show in which some of the greatest entertainers of the war years are portrayed. Here you can hear the likes of George Formby and Gracie Fields, belting it out as they used to do. There are 2 assault courses for the youngster’s. A special one designed for the budding commando’s, and an escape through the tunnel for those who fancy their chances of joining the SAS. Eden Camp is a tremendous place for those with disabilities. It is 100% “on the flat”, which is a boon for wheelchair users. An excellent facility is that of wheelchairs being available for use at no extra charge. There are disabled toilet facilities, Braille sheets and audiocassettes for loan. As the brochure says “The unique concept of Eden Camp means that you can utilise every sense during a visit.” Cafeteria facilities are available, and as you would expect are themed. There is the Prisoners Canteen, Officers Mess Tearooms and the Garrisons Cinema Bar. There are also “mess” rooms for those who have brought their own food, and loads of benches and tables around the site. The design of the camp ensures that you are never very far from your car, and can leave food until you require it. An experience not to be missed is that of picnicking under the “doodlebug” bomb. The sound of the approaching bomb and then ensuing silence before the explosion is unforgettable to say the least. OPENING TIMES - 10am to 5pm, last admission 4pm. The camp is open from the 2nd Monday in January to 23rd December - seven days a week. The management advise you to allow 3 to 4 hours for a visit. The cost of admission is •Adult £4 •Child £3 •OAP £3 •Disabled £3
A nice touch is that dogs are allowed everywhere on the site with the exception of the cafeterias, provided of course that they are on a lead and well behaved. This is a boon to those of us who miss out on places like this because we are dog owners. Eden Camp is located at the junction of the A64 York to Scarborough road and the A169 to Malton to Pickering road. The web site at www.edencamp.co.uk will give you even more information on this great day out. If you are ever on holiday in the vicinity, make sure that you pay Eden Camp a visit. It is great fun for the children, and pure nostalgia for the oldies.
If you are interested in the World War II, then Eden camp is a must visit. It is situated in an old prisoner of war camp in North Yorkshire near the village of Malton (18 Miles North West of York). Each is a display that explains one particular section of history. Although the museum focuses on the home front there is also allot of information on the major battles and campaigns of the war. Several of the huts contain recreations of war scenes (featuring sounds and smells) such as a Blitzed street or a war time coal mine. To see all of the displays it is recommended that you leave 3-4 hours but you could easily spend double that or more. Huts are added all the time and the site also has a café, bar children?s play area and shop. There is parking for 400 cars and the site is open all year round. The entry price is a bargain, we paid £3:50 per adult. I would defiantly recommend a visit. Visit their web site for more info at www.edencamp.co.uk.
Billed as the "World's only Modern History Theme Museum", Eden Camp is a museum with a difference: you'll like it and your kids (if you have any) will love it. It is for the Second World War what Jorvik is to the Vikings, only better. First founded as a Prisoner of War Camp in 1942, Eden Camp is now a superb attraction, breaking its own visitor records yearly, and its not hard to see why. Utilising some of the original POW Camp's huts, it brings to life the trials and tribulations of servicemen and women, civilians, and the history of World War II. Each hut (there are over 30 now, with more added each year) offers a differnt view of life in Britain during the conflict, and are both interesting and imformative. As the museum is in huts, on the odd day (1 or 2 a year) that it rains in Yorkshire, this is the ideal place to go. They recreate the sights, sounds and smells of war-torn Blighty, with enough gore to entertain the kids (and "big kids"), but informative enough to make mums, dads and teachers glad that they took the little buggers. The site isn't designed specifically for children, although they have been kept in mind, and so whatever your age, you're bound to enjoy a day at Eden Camp. But who wants to go with all those brats around? This isn't going to be like the time you were admiring the Mona Lisa and all those French school kids in out of fasion faded jean-jackets surrounded you and proceeded to throw "la glace" at the glass. With the exception of the firing of "machine guns" and swooping of "spitfires" outside, the huts are so good that children are too busy reading (yes, reading) and looking at the exhibitions to create mayhem. A tip for parents and teachers is not to mention the words "museum" and "education", but say that you're off for a day out at a place with big tanks and planes, and your little treasures will learn without even knowi
ng it. The gift shop, too, is great. With all of the usual museumy stuff, and great trinkets and books to keep you enthralled long after you've left. I defy anyone to go and not return with a metal "Only three persons allowned in the privy" sign. I have never heard anyone complain about their visit to Eden Camp (with the exception of my Gran who spoke up about the powdered eggs and sugar rationing in the cafeteria (Eden Camp take their WWII theme a little too far) - believe that if you will), and have recieved nothing but compliments from people whom I have taken there. If you're spending a few days away in York or Scarborough, Eden Camp is well worth the few minutes drive up the A64, or for those further afield. On their website, which has all of the opening times and a map of the site itself, they say that you should leave three hours to complete your trip back in time, but I think that that is quite a conservative estimate - the swings and slides take up a good two hours alone, and as I mentioned, there's stuff for the kids too.