Discover The Museum's History

In 2020 we started the exciting process of changing our name and by the end of June 2021, our new name Discover Bucks Museum will be official. Find out why and how we went about this important change here.

Previous to this we were known as Bucks County Museum and in July 2014 we became an independent trust and registered charity, following Bucks County Council management for many years. Discover Buck Museum currently receives a management fee from Buckinghamshire Council to look after the collections.

Discover Bucks Museum is also one of the Arts Council National Portfolio Organisations (Band 1) with a small grant to help us work with our local communities and collaborate over programmes and displays. The Museum has Accreditation Status from the Arts Council, which is a benchmark assessed by Arts Council to ensure high standards of governance, collections care and visitor offer. 

The Museum building itself is a wonderful piece of history with several hundred years of different people living and working here. Former residents include Medieval priests, wealthy Tudors, school masters and boys, and Dr Baker and his family who lived here from the 1900s, until the house was sold in the 1950s to the Bucks Archaeological Society. The Museum building is also Grade II* listed. 

Bucks Museum History
Bucks Museum Garden

Discover what it was like for the Baker family to live here in the first half of the 20th century with our audio guide. The Georgian Room was their sitting room and opened out onto the garden, which had a tennis court and coach house for their pony and trap. Cecily Baker’s bedroom was upstairs in the Tudor House part, opposite to the Tudor wall painted area. You can also still see the dispensing chemist serving hatch in our shop used by Dr Baker’s wife for his patients.

Bucks Archaeological Society bought the old grammar school in 1907 to start a museum with their collections and acquired other parts of the building a few decades later. Bucks County Council took over the operation of the Museum from 1957 until the move to Independent Trust Status in 2014. The Roald Dahl Children’s Gallery was created in the old family stables and coach house and opened in 1996, as an interactive children’s attraction exploring the world through the stories of Roald Dahl. The gallery won the Gulbenkian Award in 1997 and the judges said  ‘Without doubt the UK’s best hands-on museum for children’

Discover the story of the Museum’s buildings written by Chris Stone (pdf download)

The Buckinghamshire County Museum Trust is a company registered in England and Wales (The Buckinghamshire County Museum Trust company number: 8313398). There is also a Buckinghamshire County Museum Trust Enterprises Ltd company, which is currently dormant. Bucks Museum is also a registered charity number 1153345.

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