The museum has a wide variety of objects on display in both permanent and temporary exhibitions. The permanent exhibition, Down Through Time tells the story of people in County Down from the Middle Stone Age to the present day and is located in the Governor's Residence. An exhibition on the history of the gaol is located in the cell block.
The extensive temporary exhibition programme allows the museum to use different objects from the collection. In one major temporary exhibition and perhaps two smaller exhibitions each year, many different themes, from domestic life to the world of work, art, childhood, farming, fashion, sport, transport and war are covered. Artwork and photographic images are used in these exhibitions as well as in exhibitions in their own right. Some exhibitions have commemorated events or people, such as Edward Hincks, the 1798 Rising, the National Health Service and the Victorians. Most of these exhibitions are initiated, designed and installed by museum staff but occasionally travelling exhibitions from another museums are on show. Because the museum is registered and meets professional standards of collections care, it is possible to borrow objects from other museums. This not only fills gaps in the collection but enables visitors to see objects with a County Down connection from further afield.
Many of the temporary exhibition texts are available for use by schools or members of the public. Please contact Lesley Simpson, Keeper of Collections, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Madeleine McAllister, Assistant Keeper, email@example.com, for help.
Please go to our What's On section for details of current special exhibitions.