Northampton Borough Council
Northampton Borough Council

Adult workshops, talks & tours

Over 60s Talks

10.30-11.30amOver 60s
£2.50 per talk
Includes refreshments
Booking essential

Ring 01604 838110 to book
Abington Park Museum


Thursday 28 September
Saints, Sinners, Stars and Scandal

Speaker: Derek Blunt
Local historian and author Derek Blunt gives a light hearted illustrated talk about the people who have helped to shape our history over the centuries

Thursday 12 October - sold out
Pubs and the Paranormal

Speaker: Jon Small
Listen to Jon Small’s experience of a pub haunting and discover Northampton’s haunted pubs, types of paranormal activities and how they may come about.  

Thursday 2 November - sold out
Northampton Curiosities

Speaker: Helen Crabtree
An insight into some of the people and places of Northamptonshire including Thomas Tresham and Boughton Follies at Boughton Park.

Thursday 16 November - sold out
Squires and Spires of Northamptonshire

Speaker: Chris Rowe
Northamptonshire's spires and squires have left their mark across the county. This talk looks at some lesser known characters, places and stories.

Thursday 30 November
The History of Toys

Speaker: Roger Brown
The History of Toys, both social and economic, with particular reference to Northamptonshire. Roger Brown has spent most of his life working in the toy industry.

Thursday 14 December - sold out
A Medieval Christmas

Speaker: Michael Brown
A talk presented in 14th century clothing about the Christmas traditions, myths and plants of the medieval period, with music played on early instruments.


Wonderful Wax
The Art of Wax for Bronze CastingWax course

Postponed - more details coming soon.

Tuesday 19 & 26 September
3, 10, 17 & 31 October
7, 14, 21 & 28 November
Abington Park Museum

During this adult learning course you will spend time learning different techniques for modelling with wax. Over the 10 weeks you will have the opportunity and support of the tutor, Abigail Burt, to create anything from small sculptures in wax to jewellery, plaques or other decorative items.
Skills taught include tips from the traditional cultures of Nepal and India, how to incorporate typography into a waxwork, as well as an introduction to working with plaster and wax together.
All materials and tools are provided. You will be working with a natural modelling wax made from locally sourced beeswax. 
At the end of the 10 weeks you will have the option to pay for any of your pieces to be cast in bronze, costs relative to the weight of the wax.
This course is suitable for adults of all abilities. No previous creative experience required. Participants should wear old clothes to the sessions.
Ring 01604 838110 to book or book online

Postponed - more details coming soon.


The Concealed Revealed: The Magic of ShoesConcealed shoes

Friday 22 September
Court Room at The Guildhall

An afternoon exploring the magic of shoes through the centuries.
The magic of shoes has fascinated people for centuries. For many years people have been trying to shed light on the concealed object. Few first hand sources have been identified which explain why people concealed objects in houses, in particular shoes. Many believe that concealed objects were hidden away in the vulnerable areas of a house to prevent evil forces from entering it. But other reasons might have motivated the concealers.
Explore this fascinating practice with some of the leading researchers in this field, including Professor Owen Davies and Dr Ceri Houlbrook from The University of Hertfordshire, Professor Carol van Driel-Murray from Leiden University and Jeremy Harte, curator of Bourne Hall Museum, Surrey. There will also be an opportunity to take a closer look at some of the concealed shoes from the museum’s designated shoe collection.
In association with The University of Hertfordshire.
£10 (includes light refreshments)
Ring 01604 838110 to book or book online


Art History Lecture Series

To the Manor Born:Art history
The English country house and the art that defines it
Friday 13 October – Friday 17 November
Abington Park Museum

The fifth series of lectures presented by ProArtium (art historians Dr Conny Bailey, Dr Miriam Gill and Dr Ellie Pridgeon) takes its inspiration from the former manor and country house that today is home to Abington Park Museum. Works from Northampton Museum & Art Gallery’s collection will accompany the five lectures which examine how aspects of country house living, collecting or visiting have influenced the artists.

Friday 13 October 
Identity and Allegiance: Heraldry at the time of the medieval manor house
Painting: Sulgrave Manor: The Great Dining Room – J. Finnemore
And the original heraldic glass still in Abington Park Museum
Speaker: Dr Conny Bailey

Friday 20 October
Communicating Status: Anthony van Dyck and the revolution of representation 
Paintings: Lady Venetia Digby (1600-1633) – (after) Anthony van Dyck
Portrait of an Unknown Lady, 1670-1676, attr. Peter Lely
Miss Cotton of Madingley, c. 1700 – (circle of) Godfrey Kneller 
Speaker: Dr Conny Bailey

Friday 3 November
Notable Exteriors: An exploration of the ways in which architecture adapted to the changing needs of the country house
Print: Holdenby – John Piper
Speaker: Dr Ellie Pridgeon

Friday 10 November
Downstairs is the new Upstairs: The changing fate of the country house, its art collections and its audience in the Twentieth Century
Print: Northamptonshire Delineated by George Clark of Scaldwell
Speaker: Dr Conny Bailey 

Friday 17 November
Ruinous Travels: The aesthetic ideal of the picturesque and country house
Print: The South West View of Holdenby Palace
Speaker: Dr. Miriam Gill 

No lecture on Friday 27 October.

£6 per lecture or £25 for the whole series
Includes light refreshments
Ring 01604 838110 to book

Series tickets also available to buy online (online booking fees apply)


Christmas Pudding Workshop with Carmela’s Kitchen

Saturday 18 November
12.30-3.30pmChristmas pudding
Abington Park Museum

Join Italian cook and author Carmela Sereno Hayes to make a Christmas pudding with an Italian twist – infused with the delicious flavour of Amaretto. Carmela will demonstrate how to make the pudding and then students will make their own to take home and steam, ready to enjoy over the festive season. Carmela will also demonstrate how to make cantuccini style double baked biscotti with pistachio and cranberries, the perfect panforte and torta della nonna – an Italian custard tart with pine nuts and lemon. Over 16s only. You will be informed of which utensils to bring upon booking.
£35 (price includes all the ingredients)
Ring 01604 838110 to book or book online



Christmas Wreath Making Workshop

Saturday 2 December – 1-4pmChristmas wreath making
Wednesday 6 December – 1-4pm & 6.30-9.30pm

Come and join us for this workshop for adults and make a beautiful Christmas wreath to welcome all your guests this festive season. This workshop is suitable for complete beginners with full tuition. Starting with either a holly or conifer wreath base and with a bounty of foliage, ribbons and decorations at your finger-tips, you will learn lots of different ways to create a wonderful wreath that will wow your friends and family. With a mince pie and glass of mulled wine, this is a perfect pre-Christmas treat for you to come and enjoy with your friends.
Ring 01604 838110 to book or book online


Another Look Back at NorthamptonshireAnother look back

Saturday 20 January
Abington Park Museum

Northamptonshire Film Archive Trust returns to present a new selection of archive film including a further look behind the scenes at Northampton General Hospital and footage of the construction of Pitsford Reservoir around 1956.
£6 adults
Ring 01604 838110 to book or book online



Mailing list

If you would like to know about future exhibitions, events and workshops please email with your details and we will add you to our mailing list. Please state any preferences you may have e.g. art, history or general. All information will be kept confidential and used only by the museum.