A View of Corfe Castle, 1996 © Estate of Rena Gardiner (courtesy of Little Toller Books)

The museum has a programme of changing exhibitions in addition to its period rooms and permanent displays.


28 Jun-30 Nov 2018

An exhibition introducing four girls from Edwardian Wimborne.

Their stories are brought to life through displays, hands-on activities and Edwardian games for visitors to play in the museum garden. It picks up common themes of home and family, hobbies, and the unavoidable experience of illness and death. Though their lives are very different, these girls are united by their gender and generation.

Produced in partnership with Dorset History Centre and Kingston Lacy as part of the Unlocking the Bankes Archive project.

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Rena Gardiner - A Dorset Artist

Until 18 Aug 2018

An exhibition of prints and books by Rena Gardiner.

Rena was an artist, printer and publisher. She hand crafted and produced an eye catching range of beautifully illustrated and colourful guides to towns and villages, religious buildings and historic houses. Her distinctive style was a result of the printing techniques she used and her artistic skill. As a result every copy of her books is unique. At the height of her career she received commissions from the National Trust, abbeys and cathedrals.

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Exhibition exploring music, dialect and the sounds of the natural landscape.

Hats for All Occasions

Until 22 Dec 2018

Costume exhibition exploring how people have expressed themselves in their choice of headwear.

Some hats are for protection, including an 18th century gentleman’s cap to wear at home after removing his wig! There are regulation uniform hats. Often these are still required to denote a person’s membership of a particular organisation or group. Many will remember the school boy cap, which often suffered much abuse from the wearer or other boys! Also included is a selection of children’s headwear from lacy caps to a Fair Isle beret.

Only a Boy

An exhibition telling the stories of two young men with their roots in Wimborne who were killed on the same day just over 100 years ago, the opening hours of the Battle of Passchendaele on the 31 July 1917.