The Royal Cornwall Museum
in the city of Truro
, United Kingdom
is the oldest museum in Cornwall
and the leading museum of Cornish culture
. Its exhibits include minerals, an unwrapped mummy and objects relating to Cornwall’s unique culture. It belongs to the Royal Institution of Cornwall
which was founded in 1818
for "the promotion of knowledge in natural history, ethnology and the fine and industrial arts, especially in relation to Cornwall."
The museum has collections in the following areas:
- Cornish archaeology
- Non-Cornish archaeology
- Applied and decorative arts
- Fine art (including Newlyn School paintings and a recent bequest of works by Bryan Pearce)
- Geology (including Philip Rashleigh's collection of Cornish minerals).
- Social history
- World cultures
The Courtney Library
The Courtney Library and Archive
holds books, periodicals, archive material and ephemera relating to Cornwall and the South West of England. In addition, there is an extensive photographic collection which records the history of Cornwall from 1845 to date.
The Grade II building which has housed the RIC since 1919 was built in 1845 as the Truro Savings Bank, and subsequently became Henderson’s Mining School. In 1986/7 the Institution acquired the adjacent Truro Baptist Chapel (1848). Together these substantial granite-fronted buildings (linked with a new foyer and shop in 1998) form an imposing street frontage at the centre of the historic city of Truro; both buildings were designed by the local architect Philip Sambell
who was deaf without speech.
Entry to the museum is free although they may be a charge of some exhibitions. Most of the museum and library is accessible to wheelchair users. It has ramps and a lift.
Secure parking is available at nearby Moorfield, Pydar Street and Edward Street car parks. There are no disabled parking on site however with prior notice (date and time) a space can be reserved in public car park at the front of the museum. It is normally possible for coaches to stop immediately outside the museum.
Toilets facilities are located on both floors of the museum. There are baby changing facilities on the first floor and toilets for the disabled on both floors.