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The Rochester Guildhall was built in 1687 and is one of the
finest 17th-century civic buildings in Kent. Its staircase and main
hall have magnificent plaster ceilings, given in 1695 by Admiral
Sir Cloudsley Shovell, who was the Member of Parliament for the
city of Rochester at the time.
- Open 10am to 5pm Tuesdays to Sundays. Open
Bank Holiday Monday 1 and 29 May
- View our access statement or download a copy (pdf
- Free entry
- Visit us at Rochester High street or for more information phone
01634 332900 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Check out the video above for a virtual tour of the
Battle of Medway - 350th Anniversary
The battle took place in June 1667 during the Second Dutch War
where the Dutch fleet sailed up the River Medway to attack the
English fleet lying at Chatham.
The Guildhall Museum will present a special showing of
contemporary Dutch prints of the battle and of the men who fought
in it. They will be displayed alongside the plans of the
fortifications built by the English to defend Sheerness and Chatham
in the wake of this unprecedented naval disaster.
- Exhibition opens Saturday 6 May and runs until Sunday 12
- Free entry
Family Activities at the Guildhall Museum
- Battle of Medway Trail. Saturday 27 May to
Sunday 4 June 10am to 5pm. Take part in our trail around the museum
based on the Battle of Medway exhibition for a chance to win a
small prize. 80p per child, free entry to the museum
- Build your own Fort. Tuesday 30 May, Thursday
1 June and Friday 2 June 10.30am to 3.30pm. Join our hands-on
family craft activity based around our 'Journey to Chatham'
exhibition, part of the Battle of Medway commemorations featuring
Dutch newspaper reports of the battle and the construction plans
for the new fort at Sheerness. Children must be accompanied by an
adult. Free entry to the museum.
- Workshop with Wendy Daws. Wednesday 31
May 10.30am to 3.30pm
Join our drop-in artist led session; crafts will be based around
our 'Journey to Chatham' exhibition, part of the battle of Medway
commemorations. No need to book. Children must be accompanied by an
adult. £3 per child.
Friends of the Guildhall Museums
Friends of the Guildhall
Museums, supporting the work of the Guildhall Museum in
Rochester and the Old Brook Pumping station in Chatham.
- Invitations to exhibitions previews and launch events
- Access to specially organised events, workshops and
- A free welcome tour
- Regular e-bulletins keeping you up-to-date with our new
Download a membership
form (pdf 272KB), pop it in the post
or hand to a member of staff at the Guildhall
Quizzes and leaflets
The museum was founded in 1897, in honour of Queen Victoria's
Diamond Jubilee. It was first set up in Eastgate House further
along the High Street and was moved into the Guildhall in 1979.
The wide-ranging collections are housed in two separate
buildings, the Guildhall (1687) and the River Medway Conservancy
Board Building (1909).
The museum's wheelchair-accessible entrance gallery contains a
small shop selling souvenirs items, a reception desk, and an
attractive introductory exhibition highlighting the role that River
Medway has played in shaping the environmental and human history of
Medway. Text accompanying this exhibition is reproduced in English,
French and Dutch.
All visitors (including those with mobility difficulties, and
wheelchair users) can access electronic media in the gallery which
enables them to view short films highlighting key features of the
Highlights of the displays include:
- a full-size reconstruction of part of a Medway prison hulk
- archaeological objects that visitors can touch
- civic silver and regalia from Medway's past
- the most complete set of 18th-century cabinet maker's tools in
- a Victorian drawing room and kitchen
- a large selection of paintings and prints of the area
- the Dickens Discovery Room
- the Rochester "Riverside Eye" camera interactive.
Free quizzes for children and families are always available.
Borrow a clipboard and pencil and follow a themed trail around the