The Museum of Oxford has opened today, having tripled in size after a £2.8 million refurbishment.

The updated visitor attraction now boasts new displays of objects, images, oral histories and interactive exhibits.

Having partially closed in 2011 and since then had its reopening delayed by COVID, the newly updated space includes a new shop and reception desk, forming a welcome area and improved facilities for the museum’s more than 100 volunteers.

Chartered Institute of Fundraising October 2021
The Museum of Oxford during redevelopment © Museum of Oxford

The ground floor features two new galleries which will show the changing story of Oxford through collection items, video, audio and interactive displays. It also includes new spaces for schools learning, larger gallery spaces for more collection items,, community exhibitions and opportunities, family activities and reminiscence workshops.

A look inside the updated museum

Mary Clarkson, Oxford City Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Tourism says: “Amongst such an abundance of museums, the Museum of Oxford is significant in that it is the only one that is exclusively about the people of Oxford.

Clarkson said the £2.8 million investment from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Oxford City Council, and Arts Council England has “helped re-imagine the museum for a new generation”.

During the museum’s closure staff have been hosting projects made with and by members of the community, extracts of which will form the highlights of an opening exhibition.

These include Queering Spires, which explore history of LGBTIQA+ spaces in the city and won sustainable project of the year at the Museum + Heritage Show 2020.

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