Beaminster Museum

Old Congregational Chapel, Whitcombe Road
Beaminster DT8 3NB

Beaminster Museum is a local history museum covering Beaminster and the surrounding villages. Its collection covers past local families of importance, which includes the Hine family who formed the Hine Cognac Dynasty; past local trades and schools; a fine collection of agricultural tools and a working church turret clock.

Blandford Fashion Museum

Lime Tree House, The Plocks, Blandford
Forum DT11 7AA

Lime Tree House was opened to the public as a home for the fashion collection in 1995. This beautiful Georgian house was was built by John and William Bastard after the great fire of Blandford in 1731. Conservation and dating of costumes is of the utmost importance and archives are kept up to date .

Blandford Forum Museum

Bere's Yard, Market Place
Blandford Forum DT11 7HQ

The museum houses artefacts illustrating the history of Blandford Forum and the surrounding area. Our collections include railway memorabilia, artefacts from World War I and II, material from the local fire and police services over the last 200 years, musical instruments, palaeontological finds including a fossil Ichthyosaur, the Durden Collection of archaeological discoveries, a cobbler's shop, a forge, and a Victorian child's playroom.

Bournemouth Aviation Museum

Hangar 600, Bournemouth International Airport
Christchurch BH23 6SE

Bournemouth Aviation Museum is the only UK charitable museum dedicated to preserving and presenting to the public at large, amongst others, operational examples of historic military jets. Bournemouth Aviation Museum occupies a 30,000 sq ft hanger at Bournemouth International Airport.

Bridport Museum

25 South Street
Bridport DT6 3NR

From Romans to ropemaking - Bridport Museum tells the unique history of the town in this Tudor building. The story of Bridport's world famous rope and net making industries is told.

Christchurch Priory & St Michael's Loft Museum

Christchurch Priory Church, Quay Road
Christchurch BH23 1BU

Christchurch Priory Church (the parish church) is very much a living church. It is open every day not only for the usual daily services of Matins and Evensong, but from 10.00am to 5.00pm for pilgrims, tourists and visitors for personal prayer, relaxation or just viewing.

Corfe Castle - National Trust

The Square, Corfe Castle
Wareham BH20 5EZ

Thousand-year-old castle, rising above the Isle of Purbeck. One of Britain's most majestic ruins, the castle controlled the gateway through the Purbeck Hills and has been an important stronghold since the time of William the Conqueror.

Corfe Castle Museum

Corfe Castle Town Hall, West Street
Corfe Castle BH20 5HA

The museum has images and artefacts taken from Corfe's past with the clay, stone and Purbeck Marble industries and snapshots of why and how the village became what it is today. The museum is housed on the ground floor of the smallest Town Hall in England and so it is quite small too, but well worth a visit.

Dinosaur Museum, The

Icen Way
Dorchester DT1 1EW

Britain's original Dinosaur Museum combines fossils, skeletons and life-size dinosaur reconstructions with hands-on, interactive and cinematic displays to inform and entertain. Reconstructions include the newly interpreted T rex, deinonychus, stegosaurus and triceratops.

Dorset County Museum

High West Street
Dorchester DT1 1XA

The Dorset County Museum is where the story of Dorset's rich landscape unfolds in a range of fascinating displays. The museum was founded in 1846 to help protect and record the county's unique historical and natural environment.

Gillingham Museum

Chantry Fields
Gillingham SP8 4UA

The museum tells the story of the town, the immediate parishes and their people. Many generations have seen this corner of the Blackmore Vale grow from a Neolithic settlement to the bustling Gillingham of today.

Gold Hill Museum

Gold Hill
Shaftesbury SP7 8JW

Gold Hill Museum is housed in two historic buildings, themselves a feature of the collection. You'll see a squint into the adjacent St Peter's Church in the medieval Priest's House. A blocked entry from the 1700s cottage into a cellar under the old church is adorned with a mural depicting the beer kegs it once held.The cottage once functioned as a doss house for the important weekly market held outside on Gold Hill. Collections include ancient and Roman archaeology, Saxon roots, agricultural and market heritage, local traditions, domestic life, cottage industries and politics.

Keep Military Museum, The

Bridport Road
Dorchester DT1 1RN

The Keep Military Museum respresents the honour, service and traditions of the following Regiments; Devonshire, Dorsetshire, Dorset, Devonshire & Dorset, and the associated Yeomanry of Devonshire and Dorset. The Keep is a Grade 2 listed building, built in 1879 to resemble a Norman gatehouse.

Langton Matravers Parish Museum

Swanage BH19 3HE

For some years the Langton Matravers Local History and Preservation Society has been amassing a collection of over 24,000 items from the parish which illustrate the local history and life of the village. These are all properly documented and stored, but owing to limited accommodation, have been seen only at occasional short exhibitions, generally in the Village Hall.

Lyme Regis Museum

Bridge Street
Lyme Regis DT7 3QA

Built on the site of the home of Lyme's renowned fossilist Mary Anning, the museum is one of the architectural gems of the town and is packed with fascinating displays.

Max Gate - National Trust

Alington Avenue
Dorchester DT1 2AB

Max Gate, home to Dorset's most famous author and poet, Thomas Hardy, was designed by the writer himself in 1885. This atmospheric Victorian home is where Hardy wrote some of his most famous novels including Tess of the d'Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure, as well as most of his poetry.

Nothe Fort

Barrack Road
Weymouth DT4 8UF

The Nothe Fort, a grade II* listed scheduled ancient monument, comprises over 70 rooms on three levels (Ramparts, Courtyard and Magazines). It was built between 1860 and 1872 as part of the defences of the new naval base at Portland and was designed and constructed by the Royal Engineers for a 12-gun battery of massive cannons. Collections: The collection illustrates Victorian and WW2 life in a military garrison, history as seen from the Nothe headland, and the part played by the people of Weymouth in the Second World War. The collection is particularly strong in military uniforms, rifles, equipment, cap badges and general WW2 militaria.

Poole Museum

4 High Street
Poole BH15 1BW

Poole Museum is housed in a 19th century quayside mill, extended in 2007. Poole's rich history is revealed in four floors of galleries, with displays and exhibitions ranging from archaeology to art and pirates to potteries.

Portland Castle - English Heritage

Mulberry Avenue
Portland DT5 1AZ

The history of this fortress, which overlooks Portland harbour, is diverse and fascinating. Built by Henry VIII to defend the anchorage against possible French and Spanish invasion, its squat appearance is typical of the artillery forts built in the early 1540s. Unusually for a fortress of this period, the castle has seen much interior alteration, though the exterior remains largely unchanged.

Portland Museum

217 Wakeham
Portland DT5 1HS

The museum is based in two thatched 17th century cottages above Church Ope, one of which was a known location from Thomas Hardy's novel, 'The Wellbeloved'. There are exhibitions on shipwrecks, the history of stone, local archaeology, and Dr Marie Stopes, the famous birth control pioneer, who gifted the cottages to the people of Portland in 1930.

Priest's House Museum & Garden, The

23-27 High Street
Wimborne Minster BH21 1HR

The Priest's House is an historic town house dating from the 16th century, located in the heart of Wimborne Minster. This Grade II* listed building retains many original architectural features.

Purbeck Mineral & Mining Museum

Norden Park and Ride BH20 5DW

The Purbeck Mineral and Mining Museum Group was formed to consider establishing a permanent mining museum at Norden to exhibit artefacts primarily connected to the mining of ball clay in Dorset and other significant minerals extracted in Purbeck, which were intimately connected with the growth and history of the Swanage Railway. The museum is to enhance the visitor experience when visiting the Swanage Railway.

Purbeck Stone Museum

St George's Close, Langton Matravers
Swanage BH19 3HZ

Purbeck Limestone has been used from Roman times to the present day for walls, roofs and floors of buildings, from humble homes to great cathedrals. Its history is displayed here in a former Coach House, which with the village itself, is a living illustration of the uses of stone.

Red House Museum & Gardens

Quay Road
Christchurch BH23 1BU

A charming Georgian building (originally the town's workhouse) filled with a rich variety of displays and objects with a local theme. Collections: Displays include the archaeological material from Christchurch and the surrounding area; a large social history & bygones gallery featuring Victorian and Edwardian objects on many themes; the Herbert Druitt Costume Gallery (currently displaying wedding dresses 1820s-1960s) and a 1930s room setting with furniture by local Arts & Crafts maker Arthur Romney Green.

Royal Signals Museum

Blandford Camp
Blandford Forum DT11 8RH

The Royal Corps of Signals Museum is located in Blandford Camp in the beautiful Dorset countryside, only a stone's throw from the scenic and interesting Georgian Town of Blandford Forum. It is the national museum of Army communications and the exhibits and displays show the part that communications have played in the many wars and campaigns of the last 150 years.

Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum

East Cliff
Bournemouth BH1 3AA

This Grade II* seaside villa is the former home of Sir Merton and Lady Annie Russell-Cotes, who designed it to house their art collection and objects from their world travels. It was gifted to the borough in 1908 and opened as a museum in 1922.

Scaplen's Court: Poole Museums Service

Scaplen's Court, Sarum Street
Poole BH15 1JW

Scaplen's Court is Poole's most complete mediaeval domestic building and has undergone many changes over the centuries. During the Civil War it was known as the 'George Inn' and was probably occupied by troops, as many initials and dates from that period are scratched on the old stone fireplaces.

Shaftesbury Abbey Museum & Garden

Park Walk
Shaftesbury SP7 8JR

Shaftesbury Abbey Museum & Garden is set on the site of Saxon England's foremost Benedictine nunnery founded by King Alfred in 888AD. The Abbey was to act as the catalyst for the prosperity of the town and surrounding area for over 650 years. The excavated foundations of this once important and influential Abbey lie in a peaceful walled garden - a lasting reminder of the Abbey's eventful past. The story of the Abbey and its inhabitants has been vividly brought to life in a new, state-of-the-art museum.

Sherborne Museum

Abbey Gate House, Church Lane
Sherborne DT9 3BP

Sherborne Museum was founded in 1968 and occupies what was the gatehouse and almonry associated with the original Benedictine monastery, currently a Grade II listed building. From the outset it was dedicated to the preservation of the heritage of Sherborne town and its surrounding villages and is still very much community oriented and run entirely by local volunteers.

Sturminster Newton Museum

1, Old Market Cross House, Market Cross
Sturminster Newton DT10 1AN

Sturminster's small museum is housed in an historic, thatched 16th C building in a conservation area in the centre of town. The museum is managed by the Sturminster Newton Museum & Mill Society, which, as the name implies, also managed the town's historic 17th C Mill which, regularly, still grinds corn. The collection mainly contains objects, photographs and printed ephemera relating to Sturminster Newton and outlying villages.

Swanage Museum

The Square
Swanage BH19 2LJ

A fascinating insight into the history and heritage of this unique town and its residents: the museum specialises in local and family history. Our permanent interpretive panels tell the story of Swanage from dinosaurs to the Second World War. The quarrying of Purbeck stone and the local stone trade are included in the displays.

Tank Museum, The

The Tank Museum
Bovington BH20 6JG

The Tank Museum in Dorset holds the world's largest collection of tanks and armoured fighting vehicles. From the first tank ever built to the modern Challenger II, the museum houses examples from 28 different countries; Our definitive collection comprises over 250 vehicles dating back to 1909. In our bursting programme of live action displays, you can witness the awesome power of tanks in action.

Teddy Bear Museum

Eastgate, Corner of High East Street & Salisbury Street
Dorchester DT1 1JU

The Teddy Bear Museum is a unique family museum, with Edward Bear and his family of people-sized bears arranged around their Edwardian style 'home'. There is plenty of nostalgia with teddy bears from the very earliest antique bears to today's TV favourites.

Terracotta Warriors Museum

Eastgate, corner of High East Street & Salisbury Street
Dorchester DT1 1JU

The Terracotta Warriors Museum in Dorchester, Dorset, is one of the few museums outside China exclusively dedicated to the amazing Terracotta Warriors. All the terracotta warriors displayed in the museum have been specially made for exhibition by the technicians of the Lintong Museum Cultural Relic Workshop, Xian, China, as well as workshops of the China National Arts & Crafts Corporation, Xian.

Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum

TUC Memorial Cottages, Tolpuddle
Dorchester DT2 7EH

The Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum tells the harrowing tale of the Martyrs' arrest, trial and punishment, leading to the foundation of modern day trade unionism. The museum has been re-designed into a modern, informative, and educational exhibition, using interactive touch screen displays new graphic panels telling the story in text and images.

Tutankhamun Exhibition

High West Street
Dorchester DT1 1UW

The Tutankhamun Exhibition features Tutankhamun's major treasures meticulously recreated, wherever possible, in their original materials. In addition, the ante-chamber and burial chamber Tutankhamun's tomb have been accurately recreated together with all the tomb furniture and treasures.

Wareham Museum

3 East Street
Wareham BH20 4NN

Wareham Town Museum tells the story of the Wareham area from prehistoric times to the present day. It has a special section on Lawrence of Arabia and is regularly updated with new exhibits.

Weymouth Museum

Brewers Quay, Hope Square
Weymouth DT4 8TR

Weymouth Museum, which is located on the first floor of Brewers Quay, is home to the Borough Collection, which reflects the physical, cultural and economic history of the area. Entry to the museum is free, but donations are welcome, and are used to purchase new exhibits and to finance new displays and exhibitions.