Best Museums in Nottingham

Jul 13, 2018

Nottingham has a great selection of museums to explore. From an underground cave network to Oscar Wilde’s cell door. When you next want to inject a little culture and history into your week, swing by these stellar spots for the top museums in Nottingham.

Nottingham Industrial Museum

We know this museum is technically part of the Wollaton Hall estate (hold on until later in this list for more on that) but it’s so interesting that we thought we’d give it its own spot.

The Nottingham Industrial Museum is an ode to the area’s industrial heritage. From textiles to telecommunications, steam engines to the world’s first video recorder, Nottinghamshire has played an important role in British industrial history.

Exclusively open on weekends all year round, the charming Industrial Museum is a great place to while away a few hours on a Sunday afternoon.

National Justice Museum

Adventure into the history of crime and punishment through the ages at Nottingham’s National Justice Museum.

Located in the former city police station and County Gaol, this interactive museum has a history stretching back as far as 1375.

Refurbished and reopened in 2017, inside you’ll find over 40,000 objects from the realms of law and justice.

Some of criminal history’s most famous items reside in the museum, including the Bow Street Magistrates Dock used in the trials of the Kray Twins, the cell door of playwright Oscar Wilde, and evidence from the Great Train Robbery case.

Wollaton Hall & Deer Park

Speaking of Wollaton Hall, the Elizabethan country house is home to the city’s Natural History Museum.

Set in 500 acres of rolling lawns and spectacular parkland, film fans may recognise the 16th century mansion as the setting for Wayne Manor in 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises.

The Hall houses a stunning collection of wonders from the natural world, ranging from exhibits on geology and minerals to displays of animals from across the globe.

Nottingham Castle & Art Gallery

Famously the historical residence of the Sheriff of Nottingham and venue for the final confrontation between the traitorous Sheriff and the legendary Robin Hood.

Nottingham’s Castle is at the heart of one of English folklore’s most iconic tales. These days, the ancient Norman fort is home to the city’s art collection, as well as being a museum dedicated to Nottinghamshire’s rich and varied history.

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City of Caves

Underneath the streets of Nottingham is a secretive and expansive cave network that was once used to store and transport wares across the city centre.

You can discover this 500-strong maze of sandstone at Nottingham’s City of Caves. The impressive feat of engineering has had many uses over the years and all of these can be explored at this fascinating museum; from the world’s only underground tannery, to WWII air raid shelters used during the Blitz.

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