Permanent Exhibitions

Permanent Exhibitions

Our £3.2 million refurbishment has allowed us to transform many of our displays and make them much more interactive and family friendly.

The changes have allowed us to bring out many more items from the collection not previously on display – some 20% more than before!

How about stopping by and seeing them in person?

Changing Landscapes Gallery

Designed to be an immersive experience, the gallery creates the feeling of being underwater with the prehistoric creatures that swam in the seas that covered Peterborough 150 million years ago. The central case, shaped like a giant fish tank, contains some of our finest specimens.

Ice Age:
This section of the gallery contains the bones of other prehistoric creatures. They date from the last Ice Age, over 100,000 years ago, and were found during quarrying around Peterborough. They include woolly mammoths, bears, giant elephants, bison and even a hippopotamus.

Even though Peterborough is a large city, there is still a wealth of wildlife to be found. Our large diorama allows you to see some of these creatures up close – something not always possible in t

Archaeology Gallery – First People

This gallery tells the story of the Peterborough area

Learn about prehistory to the Romans, Anglo Saxons and into the medieval period.

The archaeology gallery has fascinating displays and incredible objects of national significance including one of the finest Iron Age Swords found in Britain.

Fancy meeting a Roman soldier?
Marcus Suetonius Martinus will be in the First People Gallery most Tuesdays to help answer your questions about Roman life and times. Come and say hello!


The Norman Cross Depot – Prisoners of War

The Norman Cross gallery tells the story of the first purpose-built prisoner of war camp in history and houses the finest collection of French prisoner of war work in the world.

Changing Lives

The story of Peterborough over the last 200 years from small market town to the large industrial city we see today, using objects, images, film and reconstructions.

Displays also introduce some of the important industries that have lead to the growth of Peterborough.

History of the Museum

Arguably one of the most significant objects in our collection is the structure itself.

As one of Peterborough’s most historic buildings, one of the aims of the refurbishment was to restore and enhance many of the period features of the property, as well as tell the stories of the people who have lived, worked and even died here over the centuries.

This is achieved by a new dedicated exhibition space, interpretive panels around the building and a new audio tour.

Victorian Operating Theatre

Constructed in 1897, this room retains its original tiling on the floors and walls and period features such as a skylight and windows.

We have added a recreated operating table, surgical furniture and gas lighting to turn the clock back in this room to about 1910.

The operating theatre is one of three period surgical facilities to survive in England and only one of a handful in Europe.