What's on - Museums and archives

Details of museums and archives exhibitions and events.

Museum of Wigan Life are free unless otherwise stated.

Exhibitions and events

Ancient Egypt - as seen on BBC TV

Ancient Egyptian maskPermanent display
Price: Free

Our popular Ancient Egypt Rediscovered exhibition is now on permanent display.

Get up close and personal with ancient coffins, grave goods and a spectacular gold mask. This amazing collection covers over 3000 years of Egyptian history.

Chinese New Year

Family fun at Museum of Wigan Life

Date: Saturday 24th February 2018
Price: Free - no booking required

  • 10am - 2pm - Free family activities at the Museum
  • 11am - Martial Arts performance at the Grand Arcade
  • 12pm - Lion dance at the Market Place
  • 1pm - Lion dance and performance at the Museum of Wigan Life

Join us for an extravaganza of free family fun as we celebrate Chinese New Year with music, dancing, costume and craft. Watch the fabulous Chinese dancers throughout the town centre before a special finale at the museum.

Women in WW1 - Talk by Marianne Howell

Date: Thursday 8th March 2018
Time: 12.30pm - 1.30pm
Price: £2.50 - including tea/coffee

Booking is essential. Please call 01942 828128 or email Wigan Museum to book your place.

"The situation is serious - women must help to save it!" At least one million women were added to the workforce during the war and were employed in every industry, particularly in munitions, work on the land and nursing although their wages were universally much less than the men received.

They also volunteered in vast numbers, beginning on the day war was declared and nearly 18,000 charities were formed in the war. This talk deals with all aspects of the lives of women, using national and local illustrations and looks at how the war affected their lives afterwards.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Date: Thursday 28th June 2018
Time: 1pm - 2pm
Price: £2.50 including tea/coffee
Please note: places are limited

The treatment of the dead throughout history has undergone an evolution spanning social, economic and religious domains – the historical treatment of the body runs concurrent to contemporary concerns of how best to deal with a corpse. The Biblical concept of sleep as a metaphor for death is a common theme within both the old and new testaments and throughout the 19th century to rest in peace was essential for the spiritual wellbeing of the deceased.

So, when it came to scientific research, dissection was the Christian equivalent of arriving to a party wearing the wrong trainers - nobody was going to get into Heaven in 4 parts. Prior to the Anatomy Act of 1832, under the Murder Act only the bodies of executed murderers were allowed to be dissected and anatomised by the medical schools. It was therefore necessary for the 10 or so universities in Britain offering medicine as a vocation to resort to other methods of supply to meet demand – the services of the Resurrection Man. The lure of the financial reward was enough for men to risk not only their morality but also their lives.

Death and Buried - Talk by Charlie Guy MA

Date: Wednesday 31st October 2018
Time: 12pm - 1pm
Price: £2.50 - including tea/coffee

Booking is essential. Please call 01942 828128 or email Wigan Museum to book your place.

Join us on Halloween to dispel the dark myths of the Victorian dead and shine a light on some of the forgotten, outdated and downright creepy funerary practices, traditions and superstitions from the age. From booby-trapped coffins and body-snatchers to photography and funeral souvenirs, come and explore the fascinating world of the Victorian dead brought back to life.


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