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Durham County Council

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Killhope Lead Mining Museum summer events

Published July 31, 2017 10.21am

This summer, the award-winning Killhope Lead Mining Museum is once again throwing open its doors for the school holidays with a fun-filled programme of trails, river beasties and workshops.

Killhope summer events
Kids go free in August! Visit on the 7th, 14th, or 21st to take advantage of this special offer

Surrounded by the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, families can immerse themselves in the life and work of the lead mining communities that breathed life into the area.

Kids 'spar box' workshops

During the six-week school break, children can follow in the tradition of the Victorian Weardale miners and create their very own 'spar box' full of glittering 'bonny bits' to take home. 

These ornamental cabinets were made by the miners using the bonniest crystals they found while digging for lead in the hills, and feature enchanting underground scenes.

The kids spar box workshops will take place on the following dates:

  • Wednesday 9 August, 11.30am and 1.30pm
  • Wednesday 23 August, 11.30am and 1.30pm

Each session costs £10 per child (50% deposit required at booking) and lasts for a full hour. 

Spaces are limited for the kids workshops and booking is essential. 

Please call 01388 537 505 to reserve spaces.

River Beasties and creepy-crawlies

Families can also enjoy the breath-taking scenery and wildlife that Killhope has to offer.

The reservoirs that feed the mighty water wheel and the gentle Killhope Burn that wends its way through the site provide a variety of habitats for a wealth of different creatures.

Free, self-led River Beastie Hunt packs are available at the museum, which guide children on an intriguing nature trail and even contain beastie containers to properly exam any captured creepy-crawlies. 

Clay-making sessions

Children can also express their creativity through clay, with clay play sessions taking place throughout August. 

For just £4, kids are provided with all the material they need to be inspired by the nature around them and bring back a specially made clay animal to show off to the rest of the family. 

The kids clay play workshops will be running on Wednesday 2 August and Wednesday 16 August, at 11.30am and 1.30pm on both days.

Educational tours

For budding engineers and hopeful historians, a guided tour of the original Armstrong wheel and the Victorian engineering and mechanisation of the Jigger and Buddle House can be undertaken. 

These tours are free, and will take place on the following dates:

  • Sunday 6 August, 2.00pm
  • Sunday 27 August, 2.00pm
  • Sunday 10 September, 2.00pm

All visitors should wear sensible shoes and be prepared to walk up inclines.

Killhope is also offering free child entry in August for children aged 4 to 16 years. This offer is limited to Mondays only, and doesn't include the August bank holiday, so families should make sure to visit on 7, 14 and 21 August to take advantage of this special offer. 

For terms and conditions, please visit Killhope, the North of England Lead Mining Museum.