Sitting on the River Avon is the picturesque county town of Warwickshire. Most famous, perhaps, for its medieval castle, Warwick is also home to a variety of other landmarks including Saxon Mill, a former mill which is now a popular restaurant and bar; Playbox Theatre Company, a troupe founded in 1986 and offering workshops to young thespians; and the Lord Leycester Hospital. Currently a retirement home for ex-servicemen, the building has made several television appearances including ‘How We Built Britain’ and Doctor Who episode ‘The Shakespeare Code’ in 2007.
Amongst the ancient, interesting, beautiful, and famous buildings of Warwick are two museums:- Warwickshire Museum (or Market Hall Museum) and St. John’s House Museum.
The recently refurbished Market Hall Museum is cared for by Heritage and Culture Warwickshire. The 17th Century building stands prominently in the centre of Warwick. The museum contains artefacts from various eras of history. From dinosaur bones to taxidermy to Anglo-Saxon clothing, it is a collection which shows the changing landscapes of Warwickshire.
Market Hall Museum is also famed for its beehive. Bees live in the museum and are cared for by museum staff and Warwick and Leamington beekeepers. Honey bees have been resident for so long that some of their first visitors are now bringing their grandchildren.
A ten minute walk (or five minute drive) from the centre and the Market Hall Museum is St. John’s House. This museum is set next to St. Nicholas Park. The park is a popular landmark in itself, with a small fun fair, crazy golf, cafe, boating on the River Avon, and other amenities.
St. John’s House is home to a collection of toys from across generations as well as offering audios with further information about the history of the house. The first floor is occupied by Warwickshire Royal Regiment of Fusiliers which gives insight into soldiers, war, technology, and the changes and history of war.
Museums are free to enter, although there are boxes in which to drop a donation. St. Nicholas Park is also free. However, there are charges for some activities.