Kendal Museum was founded in 1796 by William Todhunter, a natural history enthusiast, and is one of the oldest museums in the country. Housed in a former wool warehouse, the museum features a number of interesting galleries.
The World Wildlife Gallery
The gallery houses a sizeable collection of stuffed animals from all parts of the world. Many of these were the hunting trophies of Colonel Edgar Harrison and Major Cooper, a couple of British Army officers who were stationed overseas.
Animals on display include a lion, rhinoceros, tiger, flamingo, polar bear, armadillo, and kangaroo.
The Wainwright Gallery
Named in honour of Alfred Wainwright, this gallery traces the evolution of man in Cumbria. Displays include prehistoric tools, Roman and medieval artefacts and the history of Kendal Castle.
Alfred Wainwright, the famous guidebook author and illustrator, was an honorary curator of the museum until 1974. The gallery houses a reconstruction of his office with original maps, drawings, and personal belongings.
The Natural History Gallery
Displays here illustrate the geological history of Lake District. Items shown include fossils and local minerals. There’s also a series of dioramas illustrating typical Lakeland wildlife habitats.
This gallery houses the extensive mineral collection of John Hamer. It includes over 2000 specimens from the UK and overseas.
Events & Temporary Exhibitions
The museum hosts a packed programme of temporary exhibitions, events, and educational courses. For details visit the official website.
The museum is open from Thursday to Saturday throughout the year. Opening times are 10.30 am to 5 pm.
Admission to the Kendal Museum is free for all visitors.
The museum is located on Kendal Road at the northern end of the town centre, near Kendal train station. There is a visitors’ car park to the side of the museum.
Map showing location of Kendal Museum.
Address and postcode