Time and Tide: The Museum of Great Yarmouth Life, located in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, is set in one of the UK's best preserved Victorian herring curing works and is Norfolk's third largest museum. The museum is centred on Great Yarmouth's rich maritime and fishing heritage, mainly focusing on the history of Yarmouth and the herring curing works. The museum feature various exhibitions including a typical 'Row' (a type of narrow street) from 1913, a Yarmouth quayside from the 1950s and hands on displays, films, audio guides and children's activities. This is a comprehensive and fascinating look at an important British industry and a mainstay of the British diet.
The collection is of regional significance with the emphasis being on Yarmouth, Norfolk and the North Sea. A broad range of maritime subjects are covered; fishing, fish curing, shipwreck and lifesaving, merchant trade, shipbuilding and supporting maritime trades such as sailmaking. Other subjects represented are seaside holidays, offshore exploration and Nelson. The collection is dominated by fishing equipment such as nets, blocks and lanterns mainly from herring drifters and baskets for unloading the fish at the quay. Herring fishing is most strongly represented, from the influence of the Scots fishermen and vessels, through to the heyday of the early 20th century when the fishing grounds off Great Yarmouth were the most productive in the world and the port was the most important in the country, to the subsequent decline of the industry in the 1960s. Shellfish, eel catching and whaling are also featured.
There are boxes and stencils and other curing equipment from curing firms which operated in Great Yarmouth. Lifesaving and rescue is represented by equipment from early lifeboats together with nationally significant models and fine art relating to Captain Manby, the local inventor of the lifesaving apparatus. There is a fine collection of marine art with works depicting vessels and beach and quay scenes by such artists as William Joy, Joseph Nash, Rowland Fisher, members of the Norwich School and nineteenth century Italian marine artists. The art collection includes a number of Pierhead Paintings (naïve ship portraits influenced by the Mediterranean tradition) by Tom Swan and others. A significant selection of ship models is present, made by enthusiasts, many accurate representations of boats that fished from Great Yarmouth, as well as shipwrights’ full and half models.
There is a large collection of tools used in a variety of maritime trades; ship and boatbuilding, net mending, basket making, sail and rope making and coopering. The navigation collections include a pair of celestial and terrestrial globes, and on-board equipment such as compasses, sextants and sea-charts. Sailor’s crafts such as inscribed ostrich eggs, knotwork and wool pictures and personal possessions and documents relating to merchant sea captains such as the Press family are also included. The Maritime Heritage East archive includes a comprehensive maritime library with volumes covering topics including fishing, ship building and lifesaving, together with books on topics as diverse as smuggling, light houses and admirals.
The museum is fully accessible to wheelchair users. There are induction loops and an audio guide to the museum. Accompanying carers are admitted free of charge. Assistance dogs are welcome. There are accessible toilet facilities and a Baby change and feeding area. There is a children's playground opposite and an onsite shop and cafe. Great museum.
Location : Time & Tide Museum, Blackfriars Road, Great Yarmouth NR30 3BX
Transport: Great Yarmouth (National Rail) then bus (1.25 miles). Bus Routes : 2 and 3 stop very close by.
Opening Times : Daily 10:00 to 16:00
Tickets : Adults £5.50; Concessions £5.20; Children (4 - 18) £4.40
Tel: 01493 743930