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Tracing the history of Barnsley from the pre-historic era to the 21st century, Experience Barnsley is home to an eclectic collection of objects and precious memories built up by its local community.
Housed inside the charming Town Hall, the gallery opened in 2013 and began collecting objects to tell the story of Barnsley from the people who have lived and worked there. The gallery still receives regular donations from the local community creating a constantly growing collection, from medieval jewellery to rare archaeological finds.
There is a rolling programme of temporary exhibitions that contribute to telling the town’s stories, and uniquely they also present exhibitions curated for the gallery by members of the community.
The gallery continues to be a source of inspiration for locals and online communities – during the coronavirus pandemic Experience Barnsley developed an online festival of archaeology, with their e-book, The Archaeology of Barnsley becoming the most downloaded in the borough. They also organised virtual pub trips to keep local residents connected and socialising, as well as a daily jigsaw enjoyed online by thousands.
Experience Barnsley is shortlisted for Museum of the Year 2021.
Look out for The Wild Escape at museums and galleries in the next few months. Many have special events, or you can use our audio introduction to help children get involved at any cultural venue.
Visiting with children?
The more you see, the more we do.
The National Art Pass lets you enjoy free entry to hundreds of museums, galleries and historic places across the UK, while raising money to support them.