Events at Sandwell Museums

Events in 2014

We have an exciting range of events and activities coming up for your enjoyment in 2014 so keep checking this page for more information as new events are added all the time.  Scroll down and find out what's on.

We will be bringing school holiday activities, community events, music, theatre, temporary exhibitions and much more to our sites throughout 2014 from February half term onwards.

Scroll down the page to learn more about our 2014 Hideous Histories events.

The Oak House Museum, Oak Road, West Bromwich

Oak House Alive - The Oak House festival - 6 July to the end of 2014

As we open the newly restored and renovated historic barns which will make this a fantastic site, join us for a season of family fun, music, talks, history and much more celebrating 400 years of human stories on this site.

Look out for more exciting changes over the summer and autumn 2014 as we add a brand new 17th century dairy to the house and we gain photographs, hands-on activities, information, interpretation and more in our new barns visitor centre.

Please note that throughout August the oak House playground will be open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays 11am-4pm.

Please note that children must be accompanied by an adult, no dogs apart from guide dogs and there is no smoking anywhere on the Oak House grounds.

Summer holiday fun - terrific Tuesdays, 12pm-4pm on the following Tuesdays.

26 August Creature Feature  Book onto one of our animal handling sessions with Dudley zoo-booking essential £2.50 per child, sessions at 12.30pm & 2pm. Booking possible from 8 July. You can also just drop in and enjoy kid's crafts and trails.

Kid's crafts Wednesday - 12pm-4pm Drop in on Wednesdays during the School Summer holidays (30 July, 6 August, 13 August, 20 August, 27 August) and make something to take home. 50p - £2 depending what you make. You can also enjoy our quizzes, trails and games.

Great games - Thursday 21 and 28 August 12pm-3pm. Join us for an afternoon of traditional games inside the house and out on the lawn. Entry Free

Gig in the grounds - 7 September 1pm - 4pm-Why not bring a picnic, sit on the grass in the grounds and enjoy the music from our band Jazz on Tap with some of your favourite pop, jazz and soul classics- You can also see and interact with the Sandwell foghorn - Entry free

Heritage open daysOak House Alive Talk-Thursday 11 September, house open 5:30pm talk at 6:30pm, tea and coffee available.  A talk by the principal officer for museums, arts and tourism about the new discoveries about the history of the site and it's owners as well as the restoration of the barns project.  Booking essential 0121 553 0759

Heritage open days- 'Up the mysterious stairs' and the 1600s dairy Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 Sep, 2-5pm.  A chance to explore the top floor of the house which is usually closed to visitors. We will be taking visitors up in small groups so there may be a short wait. Visitors can also see our brand new 1600s dairy for the first time and on Sunday 14 there will also be 17th century servants in the house. The Sandwell Foghorn will also be on site- No need to book

Meet the Tudors-28 September 11am-3pm -Visit the oak House and meet the Tudors, enjoy the music and dance and see the house come alive, enjoy the children's crafts and Tudor trails.

Wednesbury Museum and Art Gallery, Holyhead Road, Wednesbury

400 Years of the selfie: An exhibition about portraits from Elizabethan times to modern photos and 'selfies' - The exhibition includes ten fabulous paintings from the collection of Ingestre Hall Residential Arts Centre, and a selection of photo portraits on loan from Sandwell Archives. Look out for events, activities and projects around this exhibition - Its free to enter.

Find out more about the exhibition

Hideous history Saxon shields 21, 22 and 23 August, 2-4pm-Design a traditional Saxon shield to help defend against the invading Vikings! Crafts cost £1 per item made.

What's down there cellar Tours 12 and 13 September, 2pm and 3pm As part of the Heritage Open Days we are offering visitors the chance to join us for a tour of the collection stores and cellars at Wednesbury Museum and Art Gallery. These are free tours but as spaces are limited we strongly recommend booking your place in advance by calling 0121 556 0683.

The Manor House Museum - Hall Green Road, West Bromwich

Summer opening -Saturday 19 July-Sunday 14 September 2014 New tours start for the summer when we'll be open Thursday & Friday 1pm-4pm. Saturday & Sunday 2pm-5pm. Last tours are 1 hour prior to closing -just drop in no need to book. From July 2014 we will also be offering a virtual tour, for those unable to climb the stairs in the house. They will be available during opening hours and need to be booked in advance, this can be done by  calling 0121 588 2985.  We are closed 21st August                                                                            

Saturday movie club . Come and see a fantastic family movie in the Great Hall.11am-1pm. A small tuck shop will be open. £2 per person ALL children must be accompanied by an adult. 2 August 2014 -Toy Story and 9 September -Toy Story 2    

Monday Movie Club throughout August- 1.30pm start door open at 1pm - Come and see a different family movie every week in the Great Hall. A small tuck shop will be open. £2 per person ALL children must be accompanied by an adult
Bank Holiday Monday 25th August CARS (PG)

Summer Sandwell Soundbites - 26th August. 1pm-4pm Last admission 3pm. Come along and learn how to play a musical instrument or bring your own and get better!. They are a local community group who are inviting anyone to get musical at the Manor. There is no age limit but we do ask that participants are 5years and above. There will be a limited amount of instruments for people to use, ukuleles, guitars, drums etc. if anyone wants to bring their own instrument they are very welcome. Admission free

Comedy of Errors with the Festival Players Sunday 31 August 4pm gates open 5pm start. An outdoor performance of this Shakespeare play as the Festival Players roll into town once again. Why not bring a picnic and something to sit on (no umbrellas please) and enjoy the performance out in the grounds. £12 in advance £14 on gate (concessions £10 and £12)   tickets from the Manor House or the CRBO website. May be indoors if the weather is inclement.

Hideous history Wednesdays throughout the summer holidays -You asked us for hideous histories so here it is! Find out about the not so nice things that happened in different periods of history. There will be craft workshops and story  telling and more. Wednesday 30 July - Medieval 11am-3pm Wednesday 6 August-Egyptians 11am-3pm Wednesday 13th August- Greeks 11am-3pm Wednesday 20 August-Romans 11am-3pm Wednesday 27 August - Tudors 11am-3pm

Saturday movie club 9th September 2014 11am-1pm. Come and see a fantastic family movie Toy Story 2 in the Great Hall. A small tuck shop will be open. £2 per person ALL children must be accompanied by an adult.

Heritage open weekend Saturday 13 & 14 September. 2pm-5pm Have a fantastic guided tour and find out what Medieval people ate and even get to try a sample or two.

Haden Hill House Museum and Old Hall, Haden Hill Park, Cradley Heath 

Summer Holiday Fun

Children's drop in craft activities

Friday 29 August 11am-3pm - decorate and personalise a new pencil case for school £2. Come along and be crafty - no need to book.

Fun Thursdays - Lots of fun to be had. See the magic show and balloon modelling with Ron Popple. Free admission. Thursday 7 August 11am-3pm and Thursday 28 August 11am-3pm.

The hideous histories guide to Victorian death and medicine - 21 August 12pm-4pm. A light-hearted family friendly afternoon looking at the less savoury aspects of Victorian life, looking at cures and medicine, mortsafes and murder.

Bank holiday fun - Monday 25 August 1pm-5pm. Just drop-in for a variety of children's craft activities ranging from 50p £2 depending what you make also trails and quizzes. The tea from will also be open.

Heritage Open Days - " What's up there?" Wednesday 10 September 2.30pm. A rare chance to see the bits of the house & Hall not usually open to the public with our behind the scenes tours Advance booking essential-01384 569 444

Haden Hall open day - Saturday 13 & Sunday 14 Sept 2pm-5pm . See inside our seventeenth century house not often open to the public.

Scarecrow weekend -Haden Hill House and park 13 & 14 September. - Explore Haden Hill House and our Green Heritage awarded parkland and enjoy the variety of scarecrows produced by local schools and organisations.

Bishop Asbury's Cottage

Open day - free entry Sunday 14 September 2pm-5pm.

Galton Valley pumping station

Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 September 10am till 4pm. Housed in the New Smethwick Pumping Station the museum will be open to visitors and there will be guided walks to the old James Watt Smethwick Engine site at 11am and 2pm. 0121 556 0683

Hideous histories season

You asked us for hideous histories so here it is! In 2014 across our sites we are holding a series of Hideous histories family friendly events and activities where you can find out about the less pleasant aspects of life long ago with hands-on activities.

Pick up your Hideous Histories Passport at one of our sites and visit 5 of our events at at least two different site and you can go into our prize draw.

Hideous histories guide to fiendish fashions- 24 and 25 April - 11am-3pm Fiendish fashions- a hideous histories guide to Victorian style, find out more about how Victorian ladies and gentlemen kept up appearances! Haden Hill House Museum.

Hideous histories crafts - 26 and 30 May - 11am-3pm come along and enjoy some hideous history crafts. Price dependant on item made. The Manor House Museum.  

The hideous histories guide to perilous pirates - 28 May,  11am-3pm. Help to save the Manor House from being ambushed by the pirates of dark water led by the very naughty Gertie Gunpowder!! Crafts and activities, magic, storytelling and balloons - fun for all.  The Manor House Museum.

Hideous histories guide to Tudor hideous housework -  29 July 12pm-4pm. You thought doing household chores today is awful, then try doing the housework, cooking, cleaning and washing 400 years ago and that's all before we get to the toilets! Oak House Museum

The hideous histories guide to showing off - 31 July, 12pm-4pm. People in the past used all sorts of ways to show off how wealthy and important they were, many of which were not very good for their health! Join us and learn about wicked wigs, terrible clothes, awful portraits, manky make-up (and that was just the men), pongy perfume, (and that was just the men too) gruesome grand tours and loads more family fun. You can also enjoy our fabulous portraits exhibition with portraits from Ingestre Hall from Elizabethan times onwards. Wednesbury Museum

Hideous histories Wednesday - Join us during the summer holidays on Wednesdays for the hideous histories guide to the not so nice things that happened long ago. There will be craft workshops and story telling and much more. The Manor House Museum.

  • Wednesday 30 July - Medieval 11am-3pm
  • Wednesday 6 August - Egyptians 11am-3pm
  • Wednesday 13 August - Greeks 11am-3pm
  • Wednesday 20 August - Romans 11am-3pm
  • Wednesday 27 August - Tudors 11am-3pm

Hideous history sneaky Viking long ships 7th, 8th and 9th August, 2-4pm As the Vikings went raiding their ships took them far afield from home, visit the gallery to make a model of one of their sneaky long ships. crafts cost £1 per item made. Wednesbury Museum

Hideous histories guide to the Wise Woman....the Wise Woman - 19 August. 12pm-4pm. An afternoon learning about the less savoury aspects of Tudor life, meet the wise woman who will cure you of any ailments and learn about Tudor medicine, crime and punishments. Oak House Museum.

The hideous histories guide to murders and Medicine -21 August 12pm-4pm. A  light-hearted family friendly afternoon looking at the less savoury aspects of Victorian life, looking at cures and medicine, mortsafes and murder. Haden Hill House Museum

Hideous history Saxon shields 21, 22 and 23 August, 2-4pm Design a traditional Saxon shield to help defend against the invading Vikings! Crafts cost £1 per item made. Wednesbury Museum

The hideous histories guide to life on the home front - 4 and 5 October 11am-3pm. A weekend looking at fiendish food, foul fashions and life on the home front in World War II. Haden Hill House

Hideous histories guide to evil invaders! Saturday 11 October 10am-3pm. As the Vikings invade and take up residence at the museum find out about the battles, weapons and the surgery practised by this villainous Vikings! Wednesbury Museum

The hideous histories guide to howling Halloween - 31 October - 11am-3pm - Join us for some spooky family fun and find out about where our hideous Halloween traditions come from. Haden Hill House Museum

The hideous Halloween histories guide to wicked witches - 2 November 11am-3pm, Ever wondered why witches look the way they do, and why people believed in witches long ago - join us for a family friendly hands on look at witches in the 1600s and see the house come to life with historic characters, games and crafts but beware of the Witch Finder general who is looking to weed out any signs of witchcraft! The Oak House Museum.

World War I commemorations

In 2014 and over the next four years Sandwell Museums will be commemorating 100 years since World War I.

We began in February 2014 by planting poppy seeds in our grounds.

In May we undertook a bring a Grandparent event.

We will be holding an exhibition about World War I and the local area at Wednesbury Museum from September until the end of the year.

There will be a small display of objects from our collection relating to World War I or its time period on display at Haden Hill House Museum from April until November.

World War I music afternoon - 17 August -2pm-5pm, Haden Hill House and park - bring a picnic and a something to sit on and enjoy and afternoon of music hall style popular tunes and sing-a-long anthems from the period of world War I - Entry Free

Look out for our memories work in partnership with Sandwell Libraries

We will be collecting visitor's family stories of experiences of world War one, so even if its just a sentence then let us know you family stories.

Museum selfie

Why not take a museum selfie on one of your visits to us? You can upload it to our Facebook page or Tweet it to us.

General event information for visitors

    • Please note we are unable to accommodate pushchairs inside our buildings. Pushchairs should be left outside or where directed.
    • Entrance to our buildings and events is free unless a ticket price is stated. However there may be a small charge activities.
    • Where an event is advertised as 'booking essential' we cannot guarantee that there will be any places left on the day of the event. Please call the site to find out.
    • We are unable to take bookings via email please phone the relevant site and leave a message if staff are not available as our telephones are not manned every day.
    • Please note there are platform lifts to the first floors at Wednesbury Museum and Haden Hill House. Oak House and the Manor House are not accessible.  
    • Last admission to our sites is 30 minutes before the museum closes
    • Guide dogs only.
    • For information about parking and getting to our sites etc please follow the links to each site.
    • Find out about the accessibility of our sites with our - access statement.
      Haden Hill House Museum, Off Barrs Road, Cradley Heath
      The Manor House Museum, Hall Green Road, West Bromwich
      Hideous histories