Beamish, the Living Museum of the North - The North of England Open Air Museum

Useful Information

Location: Beamish.
A1M Junction 63, follow signs.
(54.881790502659010, -1.658594722758650)
Open: Mid-APR to OCT daily 10-17, last admission 15.
Online booking required.
Fee: Adults GBP 19.50, Children (5-16) GBP 11.50, Student GBP 14.50, Senior (60+) GBP 14.50, Family (2+2) EUR 51.
Classification: MineCoal Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours: V=350,000/a [2006]
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Beamish Museum, Beamish, County Durham DH9 0RG, Tel: +44-191-370-4000, Fax: +44-191-370-4001. E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1958 start of planning.
1970 museum established.
1971 opened with an introductory exhibition in Beamish Hall.
1972 small part of today's site opened to the public.


The North of England Open Air Museum is located at Beamish in County Durham, north of Durham. This is a regional museum of North East England supported by nine Local Authorities and administered by a Joint Committee of City, County and District Councils. As typical for an open air museum, it is a huge area with numerous buildings forming representative ensembles. The site of Pockerley Manor and the Home Farm was completed by many more buildings which have been deconstructed elsewhere in the region and rebuilt here. So it has two main goal, to preserve historic buildings which would otherwise be destroyed, and to restore them for the education of the visitors.

Beamish concentrates on two important points of North East England history: 1825 and 1913. In 1825 the region was rural and thinly populated, 1913 the region's heavy industries were at their peak. The various "towns" in the museum try to give an impression of a era and a most complete overview on all aspects of daily life. The different parts of the site are connected by a historic tramway.

The aspect we are interested in, is the Drift Mine which once existed below the ground. The coal mine is also part of the exhibition, completed by an early 1900s colliery village. The mine buildings include steam winder, pithead buildings, engine shed, powder house, and cauldron waggons. The village shows typical pit cottages and gardens, a board school, and the methodist chapel. As far as we understood there is no underground tour into the drift mine.