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Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery to reopen

14 October 2020

Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery will reopen on Friday 16 October, becoming the fourth Norfolk Museums Service site to reopen to the public.

Visitors will be able to access a number of areas including the Natural History exhibits and art galleries, however due to construction work on the exciting Royal Palace Reborn project to transform the Castle’s Norman Keep some areas, including the Keep itself and the café, will not be accessible.

Admission prices have been reduced to a maximum of £3.00 for adults to reflect this and visitors will still be able to enjoy many of the galleries and permanent collections on display.

Admission will be by advanced booking only. Tickets will be available for booking from Wednesday 14 October at norfolk-museums.arttickets.org.uk.

A range of measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of visitors and staff, and allow the public to visit with confidence. Visitors to the museum will have access to hand sanitiser and handwashing facilities while signage and one-way visitor routes will allow for social distancing.

Norwich Castle joins the Time and Tide Museum of Great Yarmouth, Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse and Lynn Museum which are already open to the public. The remaining six sites that make up the Norfolk Museums Service will reopen when it is safe to do so.

Councillor Margaret Dewsbury, cabinet member for communities at Norfolk County Council, said: “Norfolk’s museums are a vital part of our heritage and visitor economy. We want to see people enjoying themselves in safety and confidence as we steadily reopen each site. Our county’s cultural and historical attractions will be a vital part of Norfolk’s economic recovery: the reopening of our largest museum is an important step along that path.”

The reopening arrangements have been awarded a Visit Britain ‘We’re Good To Go’ certification, the official UK mark to signal that a tourism and hospitality business has worked hard to follow Government and industry COVID-19 guidelines and has a process in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.

Visiting Information

How to Book

Public booking will be available from 14 October at norfolk-museums.arttickets.org.uk. Tickets must be pre-booked online. No tickets will be available on the door. 

Opening Times:

Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery will be open Monday-Saturday 10am – 4.30pm with last admission 3.30pm, Sunday afternoon 1pm – 4.30pm with last admission 3.30pm

Admission Prices:

  • Adults: £3.00
  • Concessions: £2.80
  • Children: £1.50

Facilities information:

Toilets will be available.

The shop and café will be closed.

About Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery

Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery is part of Norfolk Museums Service, a multi-award-winning service comprising ten museums and a study centre.

NMS is now regarded as one of the leaders in the museum sector and in 2017 was successful in its bid for continuing major investment from Arts Council England. From April 2018, NMS has been a National Portfolio Organisation for Arts Council England, one of only 45 out of 845 heritage and arts organisations in England to be awarded the highest level of support.

Norfolk Museums Service is a partnership between Norfolk County Council and Norfolk's district councils, funded through council tax, earned income and grants.

www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk

Frequently asked questions

What procedures are you putting in place to keep people safe?

Each site has introduced a comprehensive set of measures to ensure the safety of visitors and staff. These include:

  • Pre-booked tickets and reduced capacity at all three sites to ensure social distancing
  • New entry arrangements
  • Hand sanitiser stations and access to handwashing facilities
  • Clear signage reminding visitors to follow social distancing and hygiene measures
  • Recommended one-way routes through the museums which are clearly signposted
  • Staff located at key points to help guide visitors and answer questions
  • The closure of higher risk areas including cafes and shops, and areas where social distancing is more difficult
  • Enhanced site cleaning

Have your plans been risk assessed and do they meet Government regulations?

Our plans have been subject to full County Council Risk Assessment procedures and have been assessed and approved by the County Council’s Health & Safety team. They are fully compliant with

Government regulations and also follow sector-specific reopening guidelines produced by the National Museums Directors’ Council in collaboration with the DCMS.

Will visitors have to wear face coverings?

Visitors will be required to wear face coverings inside the museum.

How will you be cleaning the museums?

We have developed COVID-specific enhanced cleaning regimes for each site. Opening hours will be reduced to allow staff to carry out additional cleaning at the start and end of the day. Touchpoint cleaning will be carried out across the day.

When will the other museums reopen?

We continue to make preparations for the reopening of our other museums and will do so as soon as it is safe and in accordance with Government guidelines.

What facilities will be open in the museum, e.g. shop and toilets?

Toilet facilities will be available, including accessible toilets. To minimise risk, the museum shop and café will remain shut for the time being. The site will remain accessible to visitors with mobility impairments.

Will you collect visitors’ contact details, in case anyone develops Covid symptoms?

Yes. For the safety of staff and visitors we are required by the government to collect contact information for all our visitors to support the NHS Test and Trace scheme. Anyone in a group who hasn’t provided contact details through the online booking system will be asked to provide their name and phone number. These details will be stored securely and will be destroyed after 21 days to comply with data protection law.

When will you resume school visits?

At this stage we expect our schools offer to be delivered remotely during the Autumn after the half term break. Our award-winning learning teams are liaising with local teachers and developing new digital programmes.

How can people find out further information?

All details about reopening and what people need to know before they visit will be available on our website www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk and our social media channels will also carry up-to-date information.

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