Why we need your gift

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Founded more than 40 years ago, The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust has grown into one of the largest independent museums in the world. As a registered charity, conservation and education is at the heart of all our activities and our aim is to conserve, maintain and interpret the remarkable monuments to Britain’s industrial history that survive in the Ironbridge Gorge.

The Trust cares for 36 scheduled monuments and listed buildings and operates 10 award-winning Museums which collectively tell the fascinating story of the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site. Our visitors can experience many amazing events and sights such as:

  • spectacular live iron rolling demonstrations
  • the furnaces where the Iron Bridge was cast
  • walking around inside the bottle kilns where world famus Coalport China was made 
  • stepping into a tar tunnel which oozes with natural bitumen
  • dressing up in period costume and taking part in a Victorian school lesson
  • seeing decorative tiles produced at the once world renowned Jackfield Tile Museum to name but a few.

All of our Museum collections have been Designated as being of national importance and they include Coalbrookdale ironwork and engines, machinery, porcelain, social history, industrial art, archives, tiles and architectural ceramics associated with the industries of the gorge.

We run around 35 different educational workshops which schoolchildren, students, adults and families can all take part in. They range from brick-making and candle-dipping to making rockets and using CAD programs to create puzzles. We work with schools everyday to support their own teaching and bring learning alive for thousands of children.

Legacies are a vital source of support for The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust as they contribute to long term financial stability. Last year, the Museum spent more than £5 million maintaining the large historic estate of buildings and monuments, improving the museum sites and running our education programmes. Half of the Museum’s income comes from admissions, a further 18% from its trading activities such as our gift shops and the remainder must be found from donations, gifts in wills, grants and trust fund income.

Like the early industrial pioneers in the 18th Century, we constantly strive to improve everything we do. We have an extensive programme of building conservation, development, demonstrations, publications, lectures, exhibitions and information services which underpins the Museum’s continued commitment to conservation and education. For news of our latest projects please click here

What your gift could help us to achieve:

  • £100 will pay for an inspirational educational workshop for the day.
  • £350 buys organic heritage seeds to plant all the gardens and vegetable plots at Blists Hill Victorian Town.
  • £500 contributes to external painting which helps to preserve the fabric of the precious buildings in our listed sites.
  • £1,000 pays for 3 new interior exhibition panels at one of our Museums so our visitors can learn about what they are seeing on display.
  • £1,800 will buy a motorised wheelchair for use by our visitors.
  • £2,500 will allow two of the Museum’s original casting patterns to be copied for use in the foundry so they can be used to reproduce cast iron goods.
  • £5,000 will allow us to host a public art exhibition in the Coalbrookdale Gallery.