Guernsey Museums & Galleries is a service provided by the administration of the (British) Channel Island of Guernsey. The service is run by a Heritage Committee, which also administers the Island Archive Service together with the listing and protection of historic buildings and sites, including shipwrecks.

Guernsey Museums & Galleries have three main public museum sites:

History

Museums Policy

Opening Hours

Contact Information

 


Guernsey Museum & Art Gallery

Located in Candie Gardens, a late 19th century pleasure garden in St Peter Port (Guernsey's main urban area), this is the headquarters of the museum service.

The building was opened in 1978, as a purpose built museum, incorporating a cast iron bandstand from the garden into the structure. It won a (British) Museum of the Year Award in 1979.

The main permanent displays, interpreting the natural and human history of the island were renewed in 1994. The building also houses an art gallery, audio-visual/lecture theatre, shop and café.

 

Open daily 10.00 - 17.00 hr., (closes at 16.30 hr. 1 November - 31 March.) closed 25th December - 1st January. Admission charge.


Castle Cornet

Castle Cornet is Guernsey's ancient harbour fortress, which was isolated upon a rocky islet, until the construction of a breakwater and bridge in the 19th century. The castle contains a number of museums, including:

Castle Cornet also has a museum shop located in the old guard house and a refectory (in the Upper Barracks building) serving light meals and refreshments.

Open during the period April - October, daily 10.00 - 17.00 hr.


 

Fort Grey

Fort Grey is located on Guernsey's rocky west coast, near the infamous Hanois reefs and the site of many historic shipwrecks. The small martello tower contains a museum about Guernsey shipwrecks, with many salvaged artefacts and related illustrations

Open during the period April - October, daily 10.00 - 17.00 hr. Admission Charge

 


History

The government of Guernsey first became involved with museums in 1907, when Francis Du Bois Lukis - the last surviving son of Frederic Corbin Lukis (1788-1871) bequeathed his father's archaeological and natural history collection to the States of Guernsey.
F C Lukis   F D B Lukis

This fine collection was initially displayed in the old family home, as the Lukis Museum. Another large collection, (mainly fine and decorative art), was left to the States of Guernsey in 1929 by Wilfred Carey and initially displayed at one of the island's libraries. These 2 collections were combined in 1938 and opened as one museum (the Lukis & Island Museum) in a redundant church. It is worth noting that there were still no full time professional museum staff at that time.

During the Second World War (and the German Occupation of Guernsey) all the island museums were closed. After the war, the British Government presented the fortress of Castle Cornet to the people of Guernsey and it passed to the control of the Ancient Monuments Committee, which also administered the Lukis & Island Museum. By the early 1950's, the Castle was opened as a public museum site, though it is interesting to note that this actually continued an earlier tradition, as visitors to the castle had been encouraged in the 1930's, when the site was under British military control.

In the meantime, the political will to improve the museum service gradually developed, perhaps with the realisation that good museums would be a useful asset to the island's developing tourist industry - as well as for the local population. This culminated in the appointment of the first full-time professional curator in 1972. With an initial staff of 2, the first curator (Mrs Rona Cole) established the foundations of a modern museum service, leading to the opening of Guernsey Museum & Art Gallery in 1978. The Ancient Monuments Committee changed its name to the Heritage Committee in 199?.

Since the early 1970's the museum service has continued a steady process of improvement, both to public facilities and behind the scenes. The permanent curatorial and administrative staff compliment now stands at 12 with a further 6 front-of-house staff. The latter category expands 3-fold during the summer season, when Castle Cornet and Fort Grey are open.


Staff & Contact Information

The staff are split between two work sites. The Director, Education and administrative staff are located at the Museum & Art Gallery, while the curatorial and technical staff are based 10 minutes walk away, at the Museum Services building. In the near future the telephone system of the two buildings will be integrated but selecting the appropriate fax number will continue to expedite delivery to the intended recipient. Most of the professional staff are (or soon will be) accessible by E-mail.

Guernsey Museum Art & Gallery site

Tel: +44 (0)1481 726518
Fax: +44 (0)1481 715177

Museum Director - Peter Sarl, M.Phil, MA

Administrative Officer - Helen Ogier

Education Officer - Lynne Ashton

Guernsey Museum Services site

Tel: +44 (0)1481 720513
Fax: +44 (0)1481 728671

Archaeology Officer - Heather Sebire

Natural History Officer - Alan Howell

Social History Officer - Brian Owen

Project Development Officer - Paul Le Tissier

Documentation Assistant - Gill Owen


Opening Hours

Guernsey Museum & Art Gallery

Open daily 10.00 - 17.00 hr., closed 25th December - 1st January. (Closes at 16.30 hr. 1 November - 31 March.)

Admission Charge

Castle Cornet & Fort Grey

Open during the period 1st April - October 31st, daily 10.00 - 17.00 hr.

Admission Charge

 

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