As you may know by now, we have closed all of our museums to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
In the meantime, we are doing all we can to make Bristol’s museum collections available online for our audiences at home and around the world.
We’ll be adding to the information below throughout the coming weeks to inspire you with ways to learn, relax and support your own creativity.
If it’s all too much and you just want some light relief, you can follow us on Instagram to enjoy some highlights from our collection.
We look forward to welcoming you back to our museums as soon as possible.
Experience our exhibitions from home
You can experience some of our most recent exhibitions from the comfort of your own sofa – from beautiful Japanese Prints to Bristol’s amazing music heritage.
Delve into Bristol’s stories
Explore stories about Bristol and the world through the city’s objects, art and people. There’s plenty to get stuck into – from Banksy to Bristol’s Black History.
Behind the scenes with our blog
We love to blog about what we’re up to. It’s the best place to find out about our new acquisitions and projects as well as giving you a peek behind the scenes. Our latest blog is a call for your help as we would love to know if you’re keeping a journal about how coronavirus and the lockdown are affecting you. Let us know what you’d like to see a blog on next.
Exploring our collections
Our first collections were brought together more than 200 years ago and we’ve been adding to them ever since. From art to archaeology, history to industry, the natural and the wider world, they are amongst the UK’s finest with many recognised as nationally and internationally important. You can search our collections online.
If you’re particularly interested in art then check out Art UK. It’s the online home for every public art collection in the UK, including ours.
Accessing Bristol’s archives
Bristol Archives holds almost two million documents which record the history of the city and the surrounding area from the 12th century to the present day. These include minutes, accounts, letters, diaries, maps, photographs and films created by many types of organisations and people.
- Access maps and images from our collections on the Know Your Place website.
- View thousands of images in photographic collections on our online catalogue.
- Access records of Bristol births, marriages and deaths from Anglican and non-conformist / Catholic parish registers (paid subscription needed)
Highlights from the British Empire & Commonwealth Collection
In 2012, the collections of the former British Empire and Commonwealth Museum were transferred to the care of Bristol Museums. Since then, we’ve been working to photograph and digitise some of the vast collection.
Take a look at some of the latest projects we’ve been working on and some of the stories we’ve been able to document through the blog. Highlights and recent exhibitions include:
- The Art Collection: an eclectic selection of works by professional and amateur artists
- The Armine Wright collection: objects collected in Africa by a member of the Colonial Service
- Commonwealth soldiers online exhibition
- Empire Through the Lens online photography exhibition
Share your wildlife sightings
Have you noticed more wildlife in your area? BRERC collects, manages and distributes biodiversity data for the west of England. You can submit your own wildlife sightings through their website and find out about the species in your area. It’s super easy and you don’t have to be an expert at all!
Your donations make a difference
We rely on ticket sales, venue hire and purchases in our shop and cafe for 41% of our income. None of this is possible while our doors are closed due to Covid-19. That’s why donations to our charity, Bristol Museums Development Trust, are more important than ever.
Please consider making a donation today. As always, thank you for your support.