We have over 200,000 items in our collections, and many have great national and international important, Some objects have remarkable stories behind them, for example our Napoleonic Craft-work made by prisoners of war at Norman Cross.
You can also find out about the daily life of Peterborough's people, both past and present, through our Social History collection.
Explore our collections
Heritage Collections Online
It is important to us that the Heritage collections held in trust for the people of Peterborough are as accessible as possible. To try and achieve this we have been working on putting as much of the collection searchable online as possible. With over 200,000 objects this is no small task! As we work through the collections more will appear online, and more will have accompanying photographs too, so please bear with us, and come back to visit our collections online regularly to see the progress!
Explore, Enthuse and Enjoy.
<p>Peterborough Heritage Collections are happy to provide the following services enquires; relating to the heritage collections, collections care advise, donations, research visits, archaeological identifications as part of the Portable Antiquities Scheme and loans.</p>
Our staff are happy to answer your questions regarding an item in the heritage collections. Enquiries can be made by e-mail, telephone or in person.
Please be aware all although we will endeavour to respond as quickly as possible, enquiries are dealt with in a chronological order and can take up to 2 weeks.
Research visits to the collection are very welcome. Please contact either the Heritage Collections manager or Archaeological Development Manager with your request.
We ask for at least 2 weeks notice prior to your visit.
We always appreciate offers from the public to donate items to our collections. Please arrange an appointment to make a donation. Appointments will need to be made directly with our Heritage Collections Manager or our Archaeology Development Manager, if it is an archaeological donation.
For donations to be accepted they must meet our current collecting policy.
Our curatorial staff are always happy to give advice on the care of collections, from the preparation and conservation of fossils, to the care and storage of costume.
We are happy to consider loans of objects from the heritage collections to any organisations which meet required standards. Past loans have included objects to Tate Britain and the National History Museum.
Please contact the Heritage Collections Manager in the first instance with your request.
Unfortunately, we will no longer be running an artefact ID service, except for archaeological identifications as part of the Portable Antiques Scheme (more information is below). These will also be available by appointment only, on Fridays.
The county Finds Liaison Officer is in Peterborough one day a week on Fridays, the Museum cannot accept items for identification except via appointment.
We will endeavour to have some general information about common geology finds on the website in the future, as a useful reference point.
Alternately, other museums in our region may offer an identification service which you could make use of.
The Portable Antiquities Scheme is a national programme which assists with the recording of finds discovered by members of the public. The scheme aims to help finders have their objects identified and recorded, as well as providing specialist advice on conservation and storage. The finds are recorded centrally on a national database, which can be accessed over the Internet.
Archaeological finds are more common than you might think. Anything can be found by anybody – while gardening, building an extension, walking the dog, on the beach, or while using a metal-detector. The Portable Antiquities Scheme adds another piece to the jigsaw puzzle of the past. It does not record finds made during routine archaeological investigations, as these are recorded directly on the Historic Environment Record.
The Finds Liaison Officer (FLO) for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is based in Peterborough one day per week. If you would still like to make an appointment with the Finds Liaison Officer we ask that you contact the Museum by calling 01733 864 709 to arrange an appointment.
*This excludes appointments to report items of treasure. All finders of gold and silver objects, and groups of coins from the same findspot, which are over 300 years old, have a legal obligation to report such items (within 14 days) under the Treasure Act 1996.
For information on the Treasure Act 1996, Export Licenses or just to browse items that have already been recorded please visit www.finds.org.uk