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The Shell Museum

Published date: June 2020

The Shell Museum

Situated in the heart of the Norfolk countryside and close to the north Norfolk coast, The Shell Museum in Glandford is a quaint and interesting place to visit. Housed in Norfolk’s oldest purpose-built museum, a delightful small building with Dutch gables, it contains one of the finest seashell collections in the UK.

The Shell Museum was built in 1915 by the late Sir Alfred Jodrell, Baronet, of Bayfield Hall, a generous gentleman who set about rebuilding the village, including the church. The museum’s design complimented and harmonised with the rest of the village. Glandford church, close to the museum is certainly worth visiting too.

Visitors to The Shell Museum will find a wealth of objects and curiosities that have been creatively and painstakingly crafted and all tell a story. The shells come from all corners of the earth, and the collection is constantly growing. Discover shells with every conceivable hue, some exquisitely carved, others left in their natural form.

There are other exhibits besides the shells that form the main collection in the museum in Glandford, such as jewels, fragments of old pottery, a piece of Pompeii, a sugar bowl used by Queen Elizabeth I, fine specimens of agate ware, and an exceptional axe head that was unearthed in the vicinity of the village.

The Shell Museum houses an evocative tapestry by a local fisherman, John Craske (1881 - 1943), depicting the North Norfolk Coast. It is also home to an oil painting by the same local artist. The Shell Museum is the only place in the UK where a John Craske tapestry is on show to the public, all the others are either on show in America or in private collections.

The only way to fully appreciate the contents of this fascinating museum, from thousands of exquisite seashells, to fossils, birds’ eggs, pottery, local archaeological finds and artwork, is to pay it a visit. The Museum is a small private trust and receives no public grants of any kind and depends on the income from visitors.

If you would like to find out more about The Shell Museum in Glandford, include opening times and admission costs, please visit their website.

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