University Museum reopens after roof revamp

Professor Paul Smith

Professor Paul Smith

First published in News

OXFORD University’s Museum of Natural History reopens today with a programme of activities to entice visitors in.

The ‘Dawn ’til Dusk’ event follows a 14-month closure of the museum in Parks Road to allow for a £2m restoration project on its leaky roof.

Doors open at 7am, with the new cafe serving breakfast until 11am.

There will also be bug handling, live music and talks about the whale skeleton conservation project and the early days of the Victorian museum.

At 1pm, the museum’s director Prof Paul Smith will give a talk. He said: “This has been a long, dark year with the museum closed to visitors.

“Although the closure has been a great opportunity to experiment with different ways of taking our specimens to the public, it will be very nice to see the doors opened again today and to have the sound of visitors filling the space once more — without them having to move around buckets to collect rainwater.”

The restoration work involved more than 8,500 glass tiles being removed, clean and resealed.

It also allowed for conservation work to take place on whale skeletons in the museum, which were lowered from their position above the court and treated for the first time in more than 100 years.

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