FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

This section answers the most commonly asked questions about the Hawkesbury Regional Museum.  If you wish to ask other brief questions please email us at museum@hawkesbury.nsw.gov.au.

Does it cost to get in?

Entry to the museum is free, except for groups, whom we ask to book in advance and charge a token $2 per head. School groups are very welcome to attend as part of our education program.

What sort of museum is it?

It is a social history museum, which conserves and displays objects relating to different aspects of the Hawkesbury's past as it was lived by people at the time.

Do the displays ever change?

Yes. The main exhibition will undergo some changes on a regular basis depending on the conservation requirements of the objects on display, and there are two exhibition spaces that change every 12-18 months.

Apart from looking at displays, is there anything to do?

At our museum currently you can sit at an old-fashioned desk on an old-fashioned chair, play with an old-fashioned phone and write an old-fashioned postcard. Depending on your age, time available and level of interest, you can also:

  • Attend talks and workshops, and take a tour of the Windsor heritage precinct. The museum is located in Thompson Square, an intact Georgian Square and one of the last remaining in the country. So within comfortable strolling distance of the museum, you can walk where people walked 200 years ago, have a drink in the hotel they patronised and stand on the spot were Phillip Cunningham was hanged for his role in the Battle of Vinegar Hill.
  • Have your picnic lunch on the lawn or eat at one of the many nearby cafes.
  • Stroll around the museum grounds, and study the architecture of its three buildings including Howe House and a corrugated iron shed. Each of the three buildings is a prime example of its type and period.  
  • Buy from a carefully-selected range of books, including the Hawkesbury Pioneer Register, which lists all the Hawkesbury pioneers and is in great demand by family historians, or take home a unique souvenir in the form of an ornamental ceramic cottage, hand-made by Hawkesbury artist, Saul Flicker-Munro.

Finally, talking to volunteers and staff about history, and sharing their enthusiasm for the past is something that many visitors love to do, and our volunteers are usually of the same bent, so what starts as a friendly greeting can easily turn into a lengthy and animated conversation.

What facilities are offered at the museum?

We offer visitors a clean and comfortable building with climate control and abundant natural light, pleasant spaces and easy access to five separate exhibition spaces within one area.

We have male, female and disabled toilets, a small gift and book shop, a room for meetings and functions, and a grassy lawn for picnics.

We are conveniently located close to free parking, shops, cafes and licensed premises, such as The Macquarie Arms, the oldest hotel in Australia.

Also on the site are the charming historic (Georgian) house, known as Howe House, and a vernacular corrugated iron shed.

What are the objectives of the Museum?

  • To be known for the high standard of our exhibitions.
  • To be known for high standards of collection management.
  • To be known as a great place to visit, whether as an individual, family or as part of a group.

Do you have a statement of significance?

All of the items in the collection undergo a significance assessment to ensure their suitability and importance. A significance assessment looks at the condition of the object, its rarity and uniqueness, relevance to the area, its relevance to the collection as a whole or whether it tells a particular story.

Do you do outreach programs?

Many of the Hawkesbury's 65,000 residents live in outlying townships and rural localities that are isolated by geography and lack of public transport from the state's main cultural facilities. To meet this challenge, an Outreach Program has been piloted whereby museum staff visit schools in outlying areas and take with them a selection of historical objects and stories on particular themes. This will be developed in line with the National Curriculum and in consultation with local schools.

I have some interesting old objects that I would like to donate to the Regional Museum. How do I go about it?

The Museum's Collection Policy determines what types of objects, including photos and printed matter, are collected. Of consideration are the significance of the object and its condition, as well as its provenance (who made it? who owned it? where has it been kept?). If you believe that you have a significant object to donate, first email the Museum Curator, who will pass on collection donation form to complete with the details of what you have/would like to donate.

Where can I go for more information about my family or other local history?

The local studies collection held and maintained by the Hawkesbury Central Library Service has an extensive genealogical collection and resource. For more information see the Library Website.

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