Do you have memories of the Medway Queen?

Do you have memories of the Medway Queen?
The Medway Queen was launched in 1924 and entered the Thames Estuary routes. She was used as a minesweeper during WW2 and made 7 trips to Dunkirk in 1940. After the war she was refitted and returned to her old routes. Her last sailing was on the 8 September 1963.
Come to the Seaside Museum for our last evening talk this year on
Wednesday 28 November, 6.30 for 7.00pm.

New Exhibition: 1914-1918 Tales from the Cemetery

Timed to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the ending of World War 1, our new exhibition reveals a little of the town’s history at the time and the role it played in international events, as well as telling the stories of some of our more prominent townspeople who are buried in the local cemetery.

If you’ve driven from Herne Bay to Canterbury, or along the old Thanet Way from Greenhill towards the Canterbury Road, you will have spotted our local cemetery. On the side of a hill along Canterbury Road, it houses the remains of thousands of former residents of the town. Herne Bay Cemeterians, a group of local volunteers, have recently completed a project to transcribe all of the cemetery’s memorials, and are working to research further into some of the history of the site and its residents.

Our exhibition showcases some of that research, providing fascinating insight into this part of the town’s history, and explaining about the important work the researchers have done and are still carrying out – work that will provide a vital research source for decades and even centuries to come.

There are also two publications available to purchase from the museum written and published by the group.

Bayfest is under way!

The Bayfest 2018 event was launched on Saturday, and there are events throughout the month to help keep the children entertained.

Check out the Bayfest booklet, available around the town, or pick up a leaflet from the museum giving more details of our events.

Most events are free, some have a small charge, and some are best booked in advance, as space is limited.

We look forward to meeting you!

Don’t forget our photo competition!

Poster for our 2019 photo competition Natural Herne Bay - forms available from our websitePosters for our next photo competition will be going up around town soon! We are looking for photos that show off Natural Herne Bay.

We ask that your photos show some aspect of nature and can be identified as taken somewhere within the area of the Hampton/Reculver/Herne triangle.

Up to three entries per person, to be submitted as prints (preferably A4 landscape size) along with an entry form. Entries to be with the Seaside Museum by 15th January 2019.

Entries will form our January/February exhibition next year, and the top 12 entries (4 chosen by museum volunteers plus 8 chosen by public vote) will form our 2020 calendar.

We can’t wait to see what you come up with!


The Red Rover Exhibition

When, a couple of years ago, the Seaside Museum was left a maritime painting from the 1830s of a paddle steamer called the Red Rover no one realised the enormous significance it had for the development of Herne Bay. Before the 1830s, Herne Bay was a very small seaside hamlet where coastal sailing vessels unloaded goods primarily intended for Canterbury.   In 1830, a group of entrepreneurs began to buy up land to develop one of the very first new towns in the UK and their plan depended on building a pier that would enable paddle-steamers to dock at any state of the tide.    Herne Bay was conceived, designed and promoted to cash in the growth of the paddle-steamer trade between London and the North Kent coast and the Red Rover played a crucial role in their plans.  The story of the Red Rover is the story of the foundation of Herne Bay.   
Our exhibition tells a fascinating tale of ambition, disaster and disappointment. Disaster because the Red Rover was sunk in a collision when she was barely a year old. She was raised by revolutionary techniques for the time and went back into service but eventually lost out to the coming of the railways to North Kent. The original investors fared no better and their concept of a high-class development for the wealthy did not work out well and most of them lost their money.  If the railway spelled the end of the coastal paddle steamers it was the saviour of Herne Bay which took off after the line was opened in 1861.
Come to the Seaside Museum until July 22nd to find out more about the founding of our town.

Red Rover Exhibition is now open

Our new exhibition is now open to the public – The Red Rover tells the story of the paddle steamer and her sister ship, how she served the town, and how she contributed to the development of the town itself.

It’s a fascinating story, about the first tourists to visit the seaside. The pier was built so they didn’t have to transfer to rowing boats to come ashore, and coaches would take them on to other parts of the county.

Do visit the museum, have a good look around our exhibition and learn something new about our wonderful town!

Volunteering at the museum

Join the volunteer team - meet new people, learn more about the townAre you looking for a new interest? The Seaside Museum is a great starting point for visitors, and our current Dambusters Raid exhibition is proving very popular, but our volunteers are thinly stretched and we’re always looking for more people to join our team.

It’s a great opportunity to gain experience in a working environment, meet new people and learn more about our town.

Please come and join us, and help us to keep this valuable resource open!

As well as taking a shift in the shop (around 3 hours a week commitment), we have people working on the marketing team, building maintenance, organising/coordinating exhibitions, organising stock and the hundred and one other jobs that go alongside running a museum.



Photography competition and exhibition – Natural Herne Bay

2020 is a long time away! But we’re already thinking about it.

The 2018 exhibition, Leisure and Pleasure in Herne Bay, is now over, and we’re in the process of putting together a calendar from the winning entries. This will be available to buy in our museum shop from around September-time, and makes an excellent present.

2019 will see our next exhibition and competition, with the theme Natural Herne Bay, and the winning photos from that will go forward into our 2020 calendar.

While January 2019 is a long way away, we want to give you plenty of notice so that you can take some fantastic photos over the next few months. So we’re already releasing the entry forms, and look forward to receiving your entries.

We’d like to see photos that show some element of nature within the Hampton/Reculver/Herne triangle (ideally there would be something within the picture that shows the location).

Photo Competition Entry Form 2019

Photo Competition Terms and Conditions 2019