Exhibitions, events and talks at the Oxfordshire Museum

Admissions to exhibitions at the Oxfordshire Museum is free.

Download a leaflet

For a full range of all the events please read the The Oxfordshire Museum leaflet (pdf format, 258 KB)

Keeping Up Appearances - fashion through two world wars


13 January - 12 April 2015

Covering 60 years of fashion, this exciting exhibition shows how the changing role of women had a direct impact on the style, material and cut of clothing.

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Saturday lectures spring 2015

Lectures are £7 per person, to book please telephone the museum reception on 01993 814106

Saturday 21 March, 3pm - Fashion on the Ration

Broadcaster, historian and author, Julie Summers will show how for thousands of women throughout the long years of the war, fashion was not simply a distraction, but a necessity. In the face of bombings, conscription, rationing and ludicrous bureaucracy, they maintained a sense of elegance and style with determination and often astonishing ingenuity.

As a nation went into uniform and women took on traditional male roles, clothing and beauty began to reflect changing social attitudes. For the first time, fashion was influenced not only by Hollywood and high society, but by the demands of industrial production and the pressing need to 'make-do-and-mend'. Organised by the Friends of the Museum. Proceeds from ticket sales support the Museum’s education programme.


Saturday 28 March, 3pm - Beachwear and Bikinis 1920-1960 - Alison Carter

From Coco Chanel and the sun tan craze, Sonia Delaunay and her Art Deco knitted swimwear designs, unisex maillots to the introduction of rayon and development of spandex and lycra!


Forged in Fire: Oxfordshire metal through time

2 May - 5 July

blacksmith's fire

An exciting exhibition bringing together many unique and unusual objects and telling the story of Oxfordshire’s metalworking past. From a rare medieval bell to the spikes on the infamous ‘Cutteslowe Wall’, learn what the artefacts reveal of the people who made them and their worlds.

Discover the myths and legends of the blacksmith’s forge, explore the sights, sounds and smells of the smithy. Something for the whole family.

If you’re interested in learning more about Blacksmithing, Blacksmithing at Combe Mill on 21 June www.combemill.org

Wednesday 13 May 7.30pm, - Museums at Night - Heavy Metal – Museum Style!

red carSparks fly as you forge into the evening with this special out of hours event. As hammers clang and the heat rises, ignite your imagination and senses in the virtual forge!

Explore the ‘Forged in Fire’ exhibition – our experts will be on hand to shed light on fascinating objects such as the Iron-Age Didcot Mirror, early medieval Bruern Bell, the infamous ‘Cutteslowe Spikes’ and a fabulous little red car!

Doors open at 7.15pm. Refreshments and live music from Cooper Black available. Admission Free.

Saturday 6 June 2.30pm,  ‘Working Iron: A history of the blacksmith's craft’

Henry ColeA talk by Hector Cole. Discover the history of blacksmithing, tracing its development from the Iron Age to the present day.

Tickets £7 to book Telephone: 01993 814106

Saturday 11 July 11am – 4pm, The Didcot Mirror and Iron Age crafts

Iron age mirrorJohn Fenn will demonstrate engraving techniques on replica Iron-age mirrors.

Admission Free.


Talks and lectures held at the museum by external groups

The Great Museums Collections 9 January - 27 March 2015

While literature and music are easily available to all, art collections consist of physical objects, not easily able to be disseminated. The images also need to be seen in the original to be fully understood....Art galleries are a nineteenth century notion with the twin goals of education and culture. Alice Foster explores ten of the great collections, world wide.

For further information and to book please contact Alice direct, email: alice.shopping@talk21.com or phone 01451 822766.

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Wish You Were Here - A talk on the art of AI WEIWEI by Clare Carswell MA(RCA) - Saturday 28 March, 10.30am

An illustrated talk that introduces the art of chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei and eamines how it is shaped by his life and politics.

Booking essential, Tickets £10.
To book a place Tel: 01608 811997 or 07769 723 328 or email: booking@artinsights.org

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The Woodstock Literature Society

Saturday 24 October 2015 at 3pm

Mad World: Evelyn Waugh and the secrets of Brideshead - a talk by the renowned biographer, Paula Byrne.

All talks are followed by complimentary tea and cakes, and visitor admission is £6 (under 18s free of charge)

We offer nine talks a year in all, and subscription for the whole series is £22

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Victorian Oxfordshire Gallery

Close up of a head in a steam bath

Discover life in Victorian times in our latest permanent gallery. Learn about Queen Victoria, the Great Exhibition, houses and homes, schools, religion, past times, farming and sanitation - don't miss the talking toilet!

See education.

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Exciting new 3D exhibit

Gold and enamel ring

Now open in the Introductory Gallery is an exciting new 3D display of treasures acquired through the portable antiques scheme. This imaginative approach using innovative technology brings these small and intricate objects to life.

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Children's activities

Dinosaur costume

Family backpacks, trails, workshops and craft activities for children and families.

Friends of The Oxfordshire Museum

Regular lectures and talks are held by this registered charity which supports the work of the museum.

Information about our lecture programme and autumn talks.

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Those were the days - reminiscence sessions

Do you have memories of Woodstock and the surrounding villages? We have started a monthly group for people to meet up, reminisce about the old days and share memories.

Meetings are at 2pm – 4pm at The Coach House Learning Centre, The Oxfordshire Museum. Cost is £1 per person. Tea and coffee will be served.

Events, dates and more information.

Last reviewed
20 March 2015
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