What's on

Our full programme of events is listed below. All events are free unless otherwise stated. Download leaflet

Special Events - Regular Events - Exhibitions

Oxford Open Doors

On Saturday 13 September, as part of the Oxford Open Doors programme, the Museum is offering a programme of tours and talks which reveal the secrets and stories of the special building and unique collections.

1pm - 2pm: Spirit Collection Tour
A special glimpse of the Musuem’s spirit store. Discover the history of this important collection, made up of 20,000 specimens of vertebrate animals preserved in spirit, before entering the store itself. You will see unique specimens including extinct species and natural curiosities.
Over 18s only, due to nature of specimens included in tour. Unfortunately narrow and steep spaces mean that there is no disabled access for this tour.
Book here NOW SOLD OUT

2pm - 3pm: Treasures of the Archive
Discover hidden gems in our Library and Archive. Unique texts, fascinating photographs and amazing stories.
Minimum age 16. Unfortunately narrow and steep spaces mean that access is difficult on this tour. Please contact us if you have any access requirements.
Book here

3pm - 4pm: Buckland’s Treasures
Professor William Buckland was a pioneering and eccentric geologist. His discoveries ranged from Megalosaurus, the first scientifically described dinosaur, to the skulls of ancient hyenas in a Yorkshire cave. Step behind the scenes to see his amazing specimens and hear his brilliant and bizarre stories.
Minimum age 16. Unfortunately narrow and steep spaces mean that access is difficult on this tour. Please contact us if you have any access requirements.
Book here NOW SOLD OUT

3pm - 4pm: A Pre-Raphaelite Museum: A talk by Dr John Holmes
How the Pre-Raphaelites became involved in the design of the Museum and how it encapsulates in stone, iron, glass and its own scientific conception of the truth of the natural world.
In the Museum Lecture Theatre.
Book here

Special Events

Carnival feathers

Carnival Summer Trail
Join the colourful, noisy parade through the Museums with our flamboyant summer trail.
23 July - 1 September, drop in, during opening hours

Afternoon Explorers

Afternoon Explorers: Ocean
Drop in to touch some real museum objects and make something fun to take home.
Friday 29 August, drop in, 2 - 4pm

An Evening with Yuval Noah Harari

An Evening with Yuval Noah Harari: Yuval Noah Harari discusses his book ‘Sapiens’
‘Sapiens is an exhilarating study of our species: from insignificant apes to rulers of the world. Bold, wide-ranging and provocative, it challenges everything we thought we knew about being human: our thoughts, our actions, our power ...and our future. Its author, whose work has created a sensation abroad, brings his brilliant insights to Oxford’ Book here
Wednesday 10 September, 7pm, Lecture Theatre

Oxfordshire goes wild

Oxfordshire Goes Wild
This event is held at Bure Park Primary School and Nature Reserve in Bicester.
Meet wildlife and conservation groups, find out about their work and get involved. Owl pellet dissection, live animals and much more! In collaboration with Oxfordshire Nature Conservancy Forum.
Saturday 13 September, drop in, 12 - 4pm

Kate Mosse: The Taxidermist’s Daughter

Kate Mosse: The Taxidermist’s Daughter
The Taxidermist’s Daughter– a Gothic psychological thriller set in 1912 – is based in Kate’s native West Sussex. All proceeds will go towards the cost of taxidermy for the Museum’s new touchable display, ‘Sensing Evolution’.
Discussion followed by a book signing Book here
Saturday 13 September, 6pm, Lecture Theatre

Digital Imaging

Day School: Imaging Techniques in Modern Natural History – A Hands-On Guide
A practical course in digital imaging using electron microscopy, 3D laser scanning, multiplane microscopy and macrophotography. Fee: £60
Imaging Techniques programme
For more information email education@oum.ox.ac.uk
Saturday 20 September

Trumpet like an elephant

Trumpet Like an Elephant
Listen to elephant sounds and use instruments to join in. Stomp around the Museum like an elephant.
Suitable for unders 5s
Thursday 25 September, drop in, 10.30am - 12.30pm

Bugs 'R' Us

Bugs 'R' Us
With over five million insects in our collection, we LOVE bugs! Live bug handling, crafts and amazing specimens. Co-hosted with Minibeast Mayhem.
Saturday 27 September, drop in, 1 - 4pm


Jones Icones

Jones’ Icones
An exhibition of beautiful images of butterflies and moths from the celebrated 18th-century manuscript of William Jones of Chelsea.
From Saturday 15 February


Crystals, naturally!
A display of minerals from the Museum's collections to celebrate the International Year of Crystallography in 2014.
15 February - 5 September

Diaethria phlogea

Light Touch
Light Touch is an exhibition of exquisite photographs of butterflies and moths from the Museum’s collection by Katherine Child.
Browse the images
15 February - 15 September

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Wildlife Photographer of the Year
This popular exhibition provides a global showcase of the very best nature photography. Images from the 2013 competition will be on display in the Museum’s Main Court for the summer.
16 July - 22 September

Regular Events

Spotlight Specimens

Spotlight Specimens
An informal specimen show-and-tell under the T. Rex. Ask questions and chat with our curators.
All ages
Every weekday from at 2.30pm

Bags of Fun

Bags of Fun
Borrow a backpack full of activities and become a family of museum explorers.
Families, drop-in
Every Tuesday, 29 July - 2 September, 2 - 4pm

Café Scientifique

Café Scientifique
A chance to listen to scientists talk about their current work and its implications for society over a glass of wine.
Café Scientifique
Suitable for adults
7.30 - 9pm on the second Tuesday of every month (except August)

Architecture Tours

Architecture Tours
Take a volunteer-led tour to learn about the Museum's Grade 1 listed Neo-Gothic building.
Every Friday, 2.30pm and 3.15pm

Family Friendly Sundays

Family Friendly Sundays
Try a trail, borrow a backpack, make something exciting to take home or have a rummage in our special sorting boxes.
Families, drop in.
Every Sunday, 2pm – 4pm

‘Presenting…’is a small and changing display of treasures from the Museum’s collection.

All of the Oxford University Museums offer family friendly activities. To find out about current events download: The Oxford University Museums family friendly leaflet (PDF)

Enquiries regarding events at the Museum should be sent to: info@oum.ox.ac.uk

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