Press Releases

Be amazed at the National Waterfront Museum

Museums across Wales are getting ready to celebrate and promote Wales’ outstanding cultural offer at the second Welsh Museums Festival from 24 October – 1 November.

Over 100 events and exhibitions will be on offer for the whole family from sleepovers, talks, walks, hunts and handling sessions to archaeologist digs, re-enactments, dressing up, tea parties and Halloween themed activities.

Supporting the Festival is TV Presenter and Wildlife Expert Iolo Williams  

“I am delighted to be supporting the Welsh Museums Festival. As a four-year-old child, I remember staring in awe at the skeleton of a woolly mammoth and even now, I am amazed by the wealth of items held by our museums. With almost a hundred accredited museums all over the country caring for around 5.5 million items, no matter what your interests, there are treasures waiting to be discovered by the whole family.”

At the National Waterfront Museum in Swansea, visitors can get hands-on with Three Cool Rockets, a creative workshop (Sat 24-Fri 30 Oct), take part in a Solar System Trail around the galleries (Sat 24 Oct-Sun 1 Nov) as well as enjoy a Halloween Spooky Funday on Sat 31 Oct from 12pm-4pm.

Looking forward to the festival, Head of the National Waterfront Museum Steph Mastoris said: “The festival is a great way to showcase what we have on offer here at the Museum from exciting events and exhibitions, to exploring over 300 years of Welsh industry and innovation.”

“This year’s festival also coincides with half term which is perfect timing, as lots of people will be out an about looking for fun things to do,” he added.

This year’s Welsh Museums Festival programme will also give visitors an opportunity to experience culture and heritage in a totally unexpected way – at night!” Rosie Clarke, Museums at Night says,

“We aim to inspire new visitors to discover the fascinating arts and heritage highlights on their doorstep by creating exciting after-hour experiences. We’re delighted to join forces with the Welsh Museums Festival to work together to reach even more visitors. Wherever you are, there’s sure to be something interesting going on in a museum near you – so check out the event listings and get exploring!”

At the National Waterfront Museum, visitors can book onto a Family Fright Night (Sat 31 Oct, 6.30pm) which supports the Museums at Night campaign. Families will hear weird and wonderful tales before watching a popular spooky film in 3D. Tickets are just £2.50pp and available from the Museum’s gift shop or by calling (029) 2057 3600.

The Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates, commented,

“We have some fantastic museums across Wales, filled with fascinating items that help tell the story of our past. They are a valuable resource in helping us to learn about and understand important historical events in a way that books alone cannot. The Welsh Museums Festival will give visitors more opportunities to discover and be inspired by the unique collections, and I am pleased to see a range of events being held both in and around Communities First areas, ensuring there are opportunities for all to participate in a range of exciting experiences.”

Rachel Silverson, President of The Federation of Museums and Art Galleries of Wales added,

“We are thrilled to be involved in the Festival once again as it offers an opportunity for our members to promote their museums and to be proud of the work that they do. At a time when museums need support from their communities, we hope that more people will be amazed by all that Welsh museums have to offer. ”

Editor’s Notes

For further information, interviews and images please contact: Marie Szymonski on (029) 2057 3616. 

Did you know?

4.27 million visits to Welsh museums in 2013

98 Accredited museums in Wales

96% of people were satisfied with the museum they visited (National Survey for Wales 2014-15)

84% visitors believe Welsh museums are friendly and welcoming places (Wales Visitor Survey 2013)

Local community groups use museum services 4843 times a year

2118 volunteers in Welsh museums

Swansea Museum and Cardiff Story won a UK-wide contemporary art competition in 2014

8 out of 10 tourists that visit a Welsh museum would recommend it to a friend or relative (Wales Visitor Survey 2013)

Museums in Wales care for approximately 5,500,000 items

Tywyn Narrow Gauge Railway Museum won ‘The National Railway Heritage Award 2013’

Judge’s Lodging won ‘Hidden Gem’ Award in Hudson’s Heritage Awards 2014

Half the museums in Wales provide free entry

Narberth Museum was shortlisted for Art Fund Prize for Museum of the Year 2013

Winding House were awarded a ‘Special Commendation for Outstanding Contribution to their Local Community’ in the Kids in Museums’ Family Friendly Museum Award 2015

Swansea Museum is the oldest museum in Wales – founded in 1841

St Fagans is the most visited museum in Wales with 564,195 visitors last year