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Visiting Hollytrees Museum


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     Our team are working hard to make sure that you and your family can safely enjoy Hollytrees Museum without worry. We are:

     + conducting regular cleaning.
     + limiting numbers, which means you may have to wait before we can allow you entry.
     + asking visitors to wear a face covering unless they are exempt. Following Government measures updated on 10th December 2021, face coverings are now compulsory.
     + encouraging visitors to respect others’ personal space whilst visiting our sites, and be mindful when in ‘tighter’ spaces
     + reminding visitors that our interactives are for the enjoyment of everyone and to use hand sanitiser before and after use.



Enjoy 300 years of history in this beautiful Georgian townhouse through hands-on exhibits and displays. Discover what family life was life for the rich and the poor. Then be transported back to the days before washing machines to try out a dolly peg and dress up as a servant. 

Explore Hollytrees in miniature through the dolls’ house or discover Bernard Mason’s fascinating collection of Colchester clocks. You can even learn all about the origins of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, loved the world over and written in Colchester. 

What You Can See

The Building

Situated within Castle Park, Hollytrees Museum is surrounded by beautiful gardens.

Built in 1718, this Georgian House was home to Charles Gray, an attorney, a Justice of the Peace and a Member of Parliament for Colchester.

The Collections

Hollytrees Museum houses a range of collections, including toys, art, costume and clocks.

Discover what family life was like for the rich and the poor. Then be transported back to the days before washing machines to try out a dolly peg and dress up as a servant.

Changing Displays

From temporary displays showing-casing stored collections to projects involving local communities, one of our galleries regularly changes, providing something new to discover each time you visit.

The Bernard Mason Clock Gallery

See star examples of Bernard Mason’s collection of clocks made in Colchester, from long cases to lantern clocks.

Plan Your Visit

Monday – Saturday
10am – 5pm




Children must be accompanied by an adult

Free admission

Booking not required


Getting Around


Our museum shop offers a wide range of products, from Tiptree jams and chutneys to prints of Colchester, vintage toys to local books. Whether you’re looking for a memento or the perfect gift, we have something for all tastes and budgets.



Access At Hollytrees Museum

Whether you want to know when the museum is quieter, what to expect when you arrive or what facilities we have, simply follow the link below to find out more.

If you cannot find the answers you are looking for, please contact us on 01206 282920 or email museums@colchester.gov.uk and our team will be happy to help. 

Where will your adventure start?