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Tel: 01970 633088

Discovery Boxes

Handling collections for loan to schools

There are boxes of objects which may be borrowed by schools for about two weeks. They are accompanied by illustrations and information for teachers, all of which are available on Ceredigion's website.

These contain several items which children may handle (unless otherwise stated). Their contents are restricted to items which are duplicates of items in the museums collection, safe to handle and small enough to keep in the pack. Teachers may photocopy any notes and illustrations in the pack.

Contents of the boxes

The boxes contain old and some modern equivalents (for comparative purposes). Where old items are too rare, fragile or dangerous, replicas or modern equivalents have been included where possible.

Subjects include:-

Cooking, Lighting, Clothes, Washing, The Dairy/Farming, The Woollen Industry, Second World War – Evacuees, Second World War – Home Front, The Romans in Ceredigion, Victorian School, Replica Toys.

Borrowing a handling Collection

Booking in advance

There is an increasing demand for these boxes, so it is advisable to book them at least half a term in advance, (especially if you need one for an inspection!) Please phone Ceredigion Museum (01970) 633088 to book a box.

Period of loan

Normally, bookings for boxes are for two weeks and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Collecting the boxes

You may collect the boxes from the Museum in Aberystwyth between Mondays and Saturdays, 10 am – 5 pm. Occasionally it may be possible to deliver the box to the school or to a nearby location. We don't mind colleagues, friends and relatives collecting the boxes as long as we are warned in advance. Some of the boxes are quite large, but all will fit easily into a car boot or onto a passenger seat.

Passing boxes on to another school

If more than one school requires a box during the same period, we ask the teachers to negotiate with each other exactly when they have the box, and, if convenient for all, the box may be transferred directly from one school to another, as long as the contents of the box have been checked by both schools on transfer and that we are informed where the boxes are.

Returning boxes

Please ensure that the boxes are returned to the museum just before the beginning of school holidays (including half terms) so we may check the contents, carry out repairs and replace missing items. This ensures that boxes are ready for another school during the next teaching period.

Printing out lists of contents

Each box contains a file of information which may be photocopied, but you can print out the lists on the web site in advance (you can copy and paste the list to transfer it to you computer if you want). You may use any text and illustrations on the Ceredigion museum web site in any way you want (other than for commercial use).

Photographs of the contents

If you click on the photographs on Ceredigion Museum's pages, you can view a larger image. These can be saved to you computer or printed out. They can be used as a reminder of what is in the box.

Risk analysis / Health and safety

We have selected the items for loan carefully, but in order to include as many relevant items some contain glass, others may contain objects with sharp edges and some contain small items such as marbles. Please inspect the contents of the boxes carefully before letting children handle them. It is entirely your responsibility as to what you allow children to handle, or what goes into a display.DO NOT ALLOW ANYONE TO WEAR THE WORLD WAR 2 GAS MASKS BECAUSE THEY CONTAIN ASBESTOS. THEY ARE SAFE TO VIEW, BUT NOT TO WEAR.


Items from the collection will be lent out to individuals, organisations and other museums if they can demonstrate that the items will be cared for, and that they will be returned in the same condition they were when lent out. Fragile and valuable items will not be lent under normal circumstances. Items will not normally be lent to locations outside Ceredigion. The Curator's decision on loans is final.

INSURANCE: Items lent out by the museum are covered by the Museum's insurance policy.

PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY: The person who collects and signs for the items should be made aware that they will be responsible for the items while they are on loan. They will be responsible for informing others how to look after them, ensuring that they do not get damaged through use and reporting any accidental damage immediately. They will also be responsible for ensuring that all items are returned by the agreed date.

CLEANING ETC: Items may only be cleaned with materials suggested by museum staff. Items must not be painted or altered in any way except with permission from museum staff.

SECURITY: All items must be kept in a secure place when not in use.

USE: Items must not be used for any other purpose than that agreed with Museum staff. All care must be taken during handling and use of the objects.

REPORT OF DAMAGE ETC: Any damage must be reported to the museum at once on 01970 633088

COLLECTION AND RETURN: Items will not normally be lent out immediately, but will be available for collection at an agreed time. Items must be returned by the date agreed in advance.

CHARGES: The cost of any remedial work due to damage will be invoiced after the items are returned.

A selection from the WW2 boxes DSC_0566 DSC_0582 DSC_0599 Evacuees Victorian Kitchen Photos by Mike Ings - Lluniau gan Mike Ings

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  • Llanon cottageLlanon cottageIn the village of Llanon there are ruins known as Neuadd (hall) which was probably an important Tudor building and nearby is one of the last surviving cottages in West...more
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