Powysland Museum

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Powysland museum illustrates the archaeology and social history of Montgomeryshire from the earliest prehistoric settlers to the 20th century. It’s housed in a renovated and restored warehouse beside the Montgomery Canal.

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Powysland Museum in Welshpool was established by a local history society, the Powysland Club, in 1874 and housed in the first purpose-built museum in Wales. In 1974 the running of the Museum was taken over by the Powys County Council but, by then, it was obvious that the building was no longer suitable as a museum; in 1990, the collections were moved to an old warehouse by the Montgomeryshire Canal, which had been carefully restored and refurbished to house a modern museum.

The Museum collections cover the archaeology and social history of the old county of Montgomeryshire and the three permanent galleries reflect these areas.  The Museum's fourth gallery is reserved for temporary exhibitions. The Museum has an active, temporary exhibition programme with displays on a wide variety of topics.

Powysland Museum appeals to all ages and all types of people. We look forward to welcoming you.

June - August

Day Time
Weekdays 10.30am-1pm & 2-5pm
Saturday 10.30am – 3pm
Sunday closed



September - May

Day Time
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday 11am-1pm & 2-5pm
Saturday 11am – 2pm
Wednesday & Sunday closed

Adults: £1.00

Concessions: £0.50

Children and Residents in Powys free.

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The Museum collections, which were started by the Powysland Club in the 19th century, cover the archaeology and social history of Montgomeryshire. The displays in the first gallery on the ground floor depict the Montgomeryshire Canal, the Cambrian Railways and the Welshpool to Llanfair Light Railway as well as the agricultural heritage of the county.

The Museum’s archaeological collections are housed on the first floor. The exhibition starts with an introduction to the Powysland Club and the Museum collections, followed by a chronological display from the Stone Age, through the Bronze and Iron Ages, to the Romans. 

In the Social History Gallery, also on the first floor, the collection is divided into themes and the exhibition includes displays on coopering; the Montgomeryshire Yeomanry; French prisoners of war during the Napoleonic Wars; the Victorian household, Friendly Societies and Law and Order and the two World Wars.



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ArtUK - It is made up of paintings from thousands of museums and other public institutions around the country.

Powysland has added images of its entire collection of 15 oil and acrylic paintings to the Your Paintings website.  Our collection contains works by C. M. Wyke, Egbert van Heemskerck the elder, G. James, Lever, M. J. Davies, Noah Frisby and W Gill.

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People's Collection Wales (PCW) - is dedicated to the story of Wales and its people and is free to use. You can discover the story of Wales through contributions from people and organisations all over the country – you can even add your own! 

People’s Collection Wales is an innovative approach to collecting, interpreting and discussing Wales’s cultural heritage.

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The Museum has an active, temporary exhibition programme with displays on a wide variety of topics.  Contact us using the details on this page for more information.

We have a regular programme of family fun activities across Powysland Museum.

  • Arts and crafts workshops suitable for most ages and abilities of children.
  • Play and dressing up activities aimed at younger children.
  • Special events from other organisations and individuals.

Booking details 

All our events are advertised locally before each school holiday and most need to be booked because of their popularity.  Contact Us for more details and charges.  

Children under 8 years must be accompanied by an adult for activities inside the Museums and for walking tours all children under 16 must be accompanied.


Weddings and Civil Partnership Ceremonies 

If you are looking for an unusual and attractive setting for your special day Powysland Museum is just the place for you.  

Please remember to book the registrar separately.


Powysland Museum is housed in a 19th century warehouse built on the Montgomery Canal in the small market town of Welshpool. It is a very imposing building, which has been carefully restored and renovated to house the Powysland Museum collections of local archaeology and social history. The building is situated in the tranquil and lovely Canal Wharf, which makes a lovely backdrop to the ceremony and to any photographs of the special day.

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Two areas can be used for the ceremony. The museum’s temporary exhibition gallery – an intimate and pleasant room, which can hold up to 25 people; and between April and October the canopy area outside the museum’s entrance – next to the canal yet shielded from the weather by an imposing overhanging roof.

The museum’s reception area as well as the Canal Wharf can be used for drinks & canapés afterwards.

Temporary Exhibition Gallery                                             £300

Canopy – outside museum (April – October only)           £250

Remember, that you will also have the registrars fee to pay, directly to them, in addition to this.

The price includes use of reception area for refreshments and use of building for official photography.

If you wish to book with us, you will need to pay a deposit of £100. This will secure the use of your chosen rooms for the date you require. We regret that this deposit is non-refundable if you choose to cancel within one month of the ceremony date. Up until one month, £50 will be returned to you on cancellation. The remainder of the balance will be due before the ceremony day.

Please note that the building is a museum and it is likely that it will be open to the public on the day of your wedding. We will, of course, not allow people just to wander into your ceremony, although you must be aware that by law, public access must be provided for all weddings, anywhere.

If you have decided that we are the place for your special day, please make sure you read the ‘Guidance Notes For Those Who Wish To Marry On Approved Premises’.  This will tell you how to contact the registrar and some basic regulations about civil wedding and civil partnership ceremonies.

Any of the two areas can be adorned with flowers. 

The chosen florist must make an appointment to visit the building and discuss the displays with the curator or the flowers will not be allowed on the premises.  This is because the building and its contents are important to us as a museum and we must make sure that no water or items that may scratch could damage them. We need to make sure that the chosen florist understands the historic nature of the museum and its collections.

You may wish your guests to join you in a celebratory drink after the ceremony and for this you may use the reception area.

The building is unlicensed, so if you would like us to organise the drinks for you, there will be a charge of £35 to cover the temporary licence for the day, plus the charge for the drinks we provide.

Alternatively, you can bring your own drink to us – we can chill it for you, set it out and provide all the glasses you need free of charge. You may deliver the drink a week before the event and we will store it until it is needed. 

You are also welcome to serve cold canapés.

Why not come and see us? Have a wander around the museum for yourself, chat to staff about what you would like.

Once you have decided you would like your wedding or civil partnership ceremony here and have agreed a date and time with museum, this will form a provisional booking. You must then contact the Superintendent Registrar to book the service itself. If the time you want is not available, get back to us immediately and we will see what we can do to help you arrange a suitable time for everyone. 

To confirm your booking, fill in the form and send it to us at Powysland Museum, along with your deposit of £100.  This will secure the date and time agreed for your ceremony. We will then send you a confirmation note, so you know all is going to plan.

We will work with you to create the most perfect day we can for you. Don’t be put off by us being a museum! We are friendly, knowledgeable about the building and area, and will help you wherever we can.

We look forward to being able to be part of your special day.

Room Booking Form

  1. Names of those getting married:
  2. Will you require an additional room for refreshments?
  3. I have discussed these arrangements with the Superintendent Registrar and have confirmation that they are able to conduct the ceremony at this time.

More Information