We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

Re-opening of the National Waterways Museum

The National Waterways Museum Gloucester will re-open on Friday 29 July 2016.

National Waterways Museum Gloucester

The museum will once again be known as the National Waterways Museum Gloucester, jointly responsible (with its sister museum in Ellesmere Port) for the UK’s unique archive of waterways materials.

Seven months of restoration work has uncovered parts of the 19th century Grade II listed warehouse including the original windows – designed more for ventilation than light.

We've also uncovered a symmetrical grid of 33 cast iron columns made by JM Butt and Co iron founders (a major local employer for over 100 years) and floorboards showing the wear and tear of the building’s former use as a grain warehouse.

Unique archive

Its new galleries will showcase the uniqueness of the River Severn and Gloucester & Sharpness Canal, as well as the role that Gloucester Docks and the local canal network had in transporting goods to the industrial Midlands. Displays will tell the stories and experiences of people living and working on the waterways, explore the building of the canal network and offer new insights into the narrowboats and historic boats.

A fresh approach

Head of museums for the Canal & River Trust Graham Boxer said: “Over the last seven months our conservation and construction team has peeled back the layers of the old museum. After removing the objects from the floors we were able to see the spectacular craftsmanship of the building for the first time.

“The museum’s new design takes a fresh approach to displaying objects from our national collection, allowing visitors to enjoy the stunning views of the warehouse for themselves."

The revitalisation project at the National Waterways Museum Gloucester is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, DCMS/Wolfson Museums & Galleries Improvement Fund and several generous donations from local trusts and individuals.


Last date edited: 26 July 2016