What’s in Store?

Beamish tells the stories of the North East through the objects, buildings and people that you see out on site which, at the moment, represents three major time periods –  Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian. However, not everything the museum owns can be readily seen on display, and the vast majority of these objects are housed within our specially constructed stores at the Regional Resource Centre.

One of the bays in the Open Stores showing a few of the museum's wierd and wonderful collections.

One of the bays in the Open Stores showing a few of the museum’s weird and wonderful collections.

At the moment the stores aren’t open to the public except for pre-organised store tours, special events, or for research purposes. However, things are set to change.

This summer, the Curatorial Team will gradually introduce the museum’s stores to the public as part of the Museum experience, enabling you to walk in and out of parts of the store to view the collections at your leisure.

As well as being able to view some of our already established collections of objects, we will also be introducing a few of our future developments, including the newer time periods – the 1950s and 1980s.

Of course, not everything will be able to be seen in the Open Stores, as there are thousands of objects in the collections. Parts of our core collections will still only be accessible through organised store tours. However, the aim is to make everything much more accessible.

The processes involved in setting up the Open Stores are huge, and revolve around the balance between keeping the store open, interesting and accessible to the public, but also enabling the Museum to continue to use what is basically a working store. As a result, the Open Stores project will develop over time, so hopefully there will be new things to see as more parts of the store open up.

The Open Stores will be open for a soft opening on the 19th July this year.

We looking forward to seeing you in the stores, and hearing your feedback about the objects we’ve displayed and the store itself!

2 thoughts on “What’s in Store?

  1. Andrew Robinson

    What an excellent idea to open up your stores. I am a year pass holder and try to get up from here from time to time.As I live some way off in Leighton Buzzard I would like to try to get round the store some time. Just in case your school term dates are not the same as ours perhaps you will let me know the dates the store is to be open.

    I would also like to record and view the steam engines both road and rail that you have in the stores.
    At the same time could you advise me when I could see these and is this store in the large building behind the railway station that is located behind and adjacent to the the high street section of the museum.This does seem to be locked every time I have visited over the last few years. I am not able to walk too far at present so do not want to make a unnecessary trip. Your excellent transport arrangements are ideal and very helpful to me at present.

    1. Cheryl Knight

      Hi Andrew – thanks very much for your comment, we’re really pleased that you are keen to come and visit the stores! The Open Store will be open every day throughout the summer holidays (19th July to 3rd September). It is a permanent exhibit so it will remain open beyond the holidays too – check the website nearer your visit for up to date opening times.

      The store behind the railway station is the Regional Museums Store (RMS), and houses collections belonging to Tyne and Wear Museums and Archives, who manage the store. The RMS is not open to the public but there are occasional open days and viewings are sometimes possible: we would recommend getting in touch with Tyne and Wear Museums to find out more.

      If you have a specific question about steam engines in the Beamish collection, the best person to ask is our Head of Transport and Industry who can be contacted on the main museum email at museum@beamish.org.uk. You can also find out more on our Transport blog: http://beamishtransportonline.co.uk/ – the blog is excellent and regularly updated, and stocklists of current Beamish transport collections can be found there.

      We hope you enjoy your visit to Beamish and the new Open Store, do let us know what you think!


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