Guide to Yorkshire's 150 best days out, part one: Museums and art galleries

After the strange year we have all had, this guide is in part a celebration of a return to some kind of normality with many of the galleries, museums, stately homes and attractions reopening their doors to visitors after months of closure owing to Covid-19 restrictions.

Bronte Parsonage Museum, Haworth
Bronte Parsonage Museum, Haworth

The great Yorkshire days out we are showcasing here really do offer something for everyone - taking in everything from a range of beautiful natural landscapes to the high-octane thrills of theme parks and the quiet contemplation of artworks.

The rich heritage of Yorkshire is grounded in the towns and cities which were built on the foundations of steel, wool and coal. From the Magna Science Adventure Centre, set in a former steelworks in Rotherham, to the National Coal Mining Museum, near Wakefield, the past is brought to life and the legacy passed on to new generations.

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There are plenty of places of historical importance and interest to visit. Country houses which boast landscapes created by Capability Brown and interiors designed by Chippendale, along with gardens and arboretums which host national collections.

Ferens Gallery, Hull

There is so much to enjoy and by visiting these attractions you are helping to maintain their upkeep and continue the valuable work they are doing. And they need your support now more than ever.

1853 Gallery, Saltaire

Situated in the Unesco World Heritage Site of Saltaire, the gallery is named after the year Salts Mill opened and is dedicated to the man described as Yorkshire’s greatest living artist - David Hockney. Salts Mill is home to one of the largest collections of Hockney’s art and the 1853 Gallery has a permanent collection of his work which includes paintings, etchings and drawings. There is also a whole floor where you can find art materials and art books for sale and two places to eat and drink - Salts Diner and the Cafe into the Opera. The Grade II-listed mill, which was built by Sir Titus Salt along with the village to house his workers, is an area of both architectural and historical interest. There are other gallery spaces at the mill including the Saltaire Exhibition and an exhibition of photographs by documentary photographer Ian Beesley.

1853 Gallery, Salts Mill, Victoria Road, Saltaire, West Yorkshire BD18 3LB

Bradford Industrial Museum

Tel: 01274 531163,

Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet, Sheffield

Run by Sheffield Industrial Museums Trust, Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet offers a glimpse into what life was like at home and at work for 18th century workers in this unique historical industrial works. Once a producer of agricultural tools and the largest water-powered industrial site on the River Sheaf, the group of Grade I and II-listed buildings show life in a rural scythe and steelworks. There is plenty to see, including the Manager’s House and Workers’ Cottages, the Counting House and four water wheels (which are in action every Wednesday). There is also a steam engine built by Davy Brothers of Sheffield, installed in 1855 as an additional power source as well as the last complete surviving crucible steel furnace in the UK. Outside, visitors can see how it was all powered by water from the dam.

Abbeydale Road South, Sheffield, S7 2QW

Eden Camp

Tel: 0114 272 2106,

Bradford Industrial Museum

Housed in Moorside Mills, which was built around 1875 as a small worsted spinning mill, which was bought by Bradford Council in 1970 from Messers W&J Whitehead to create the museum. It has permanent displays of textile machinery, steam power, engineering, printing machinery and motor vehicles. Improvement work was recently carried out in the spinning and weaving galleries. Visit the splendid Moorside House where the mill manager lived or visit the mill-workers’ terrace houses which are decorated to reflect different periods in their history. There is also a full programme of events to enjoy and you can get to see the mill machinery in action. Offering a real taste of the city’s industrial heritage, the mill changed hands several times as it developed and grew.

Bradford Industrial Museum, 235 Moorside Rd, Bradford BD2 3HP

Tel: 01274 435900,

Brontë Parsonage Museum

The museum, which was once home to the Brontë family, looks after some of the largest and most important Brontë collections in the world. For the past five years the museum’s Brontë2000 programme has been celebrating the bicentenaries of the births of four of the Brontës: Charlotte in 2016, Branwell in 2017, Emily in 2018 and in 2019 it celebrated the life of the Rev Patrick Brontë, 200 years after he was invited to take up the role of parson in Haworth. Anne’s celebration in 2020 had to be put on hold but an exhibition, Amid the Brave and Strong, will delve into the key elements of her life. The museum is run by the Brontë Society, one of the oldest literary societies in the world, founded in 1898 and has a thriving worldwide membership. There is a full programme of events at the museum and in the surrounding village of Haworth.

Brontë Parsonage Museum, Church Street, Haworth, Keighley, West Yorkshire, BD22 8DR.

Tel:01535 642323,

Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum

The museum in Great Ayton is housed in the building which was once a charity school founded in 1704 and it was here between 1736 and 1740 that Yorkshire’s famous explorer, Captain James Cook received his early education. The museum features a reconstruction of an early 18th century schoolroom, complete with Cook’s teacher sleeping in the loft above the classroom, interactive displays about his early life and education as well as his later achievements on the high seas. There is also a “Find Out More” touchscreen and new audio trail which gives visitors a deeper insight into Great Ayton’s history. There are sections on key individuals and the importance of extractive industries to the growth of the village. A stroll around the village is recommended – the Low Green village green, with the river running alongside, is a popular picnic spot.

Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum, 101 High Street, Great Ayton, North Yorkshire, TS9 6NB

Tel: 01642 724296

Cartwright Hall, Bradford

One of the UK’s leading regional art galleries, which works in partnership with institutions such as the National Portrait Gallery, V&A Museum of Childhood and the British Museum in London, along with many more national and international venues. It is also in one of the loveliest settings. Surrounded by the picturesque Lister Park in Bradford, it has a number of permanent art collections and, in addition, plays host to many temporary in-house curated exhibitions and visiting collections. The gallery has been collecting prints for more than 100 years and its collection includes works by master printmakers including Francisco Goya and William Blake and four major series of prints by David Hockney, plus work by modern masters such as Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. Currently on display in the permanent galleries is work by well-known artists such as Paula Rego, Yinka Shonibare, Anish Kapoor, Cornelia Parker, LS Lowry and Damien Hirst.

Cartwright Hall Art Gallery, Lister Park, Bradford BD9 4NS

Tel: 01274 431212,

Cooper Gallery, Barnsley

Set in the heart of Barnsley town centre, this exciting art space is home to some stunning collections and changing exhibitions. Built in 1769, the building was originally the home of Barnsley Grammar School. When the school relocated, it was bought by Samuel Joshua Cooper who left the gallery to the people of Barnsley along with more than 200 of his paintings. These paintings, which he had collected on his journeys throughout Europe, now form the heart of the gallery’s permanent collection. The newest addition to the building includes Barnsley’s first ever living wall. There is also an exciting programme of contemporary exhibitions, featuring work by international, national and local artists, as well as crafts and artwork by local and regional artists, designers and craftspeople. The gallery has reopened with its exhibition Seascapes and Riverviews - artworks depicting sea and river settings from the gallery’s collection.

Cooper Gallery, Church Street, Barnsley, S70 2AH

Tel: 01226 775678,

Dales Countryside Museum

Housed in the former Victorian railway station at Hawes, the museum tells the fascinating story of the Yorkshire Dales and the people who have lived and worked there for thousands of years. There is a static locomotion and its carriages to explore and Creation Station to get crafty in. Visitors will find lots to see with galleries showcasing objects from the weird to the wonderful, with the wonderful including a beautifully crafted Bronze Age spearhead and gold Viking ring. There is always something new to try at the museum with a programme of special events and activities which give visitors the chance to roll up their sleeves and get hands on. There is also plenty to do outdoors among the amazing Dales scenery. You can take the outdoor trail and wander through the woodlands to see how many animals you can find or invent your own stories in the special storytelling chair.

Dales Countryside Museum, Station Yard, Burtersett Road, Hawes, North Yorkshire, DL8 3NT

Tel: 01969 666210,

Eden Camp

Set in the buildings and grounds of the original Second World War prisoner of war camp just outside Malton, this award-winning museum is the place to experience the sights, sounds and smells of life on the home front and the front line. Each hut has a different theme and the family-owned museum has worked with veterans groups to create the immersive displays covering both social and military history. Travel through the timeline of the Second World War from the rise of Hitler, through the Blitz and life as a prisoner of war. There is plenty to do outside the huts including an assault course-style play area for younger visitors. A programme of events runs throughout the year, including this summer a 1940s Living History event over the August bank holiday weekend.

Eden Camp Museum, Malton, North Yorkshire, YO17 6RT

Tel: 01653 697777,

Ferens Art Gallery, Hull

The Ferens has a world-class collection of paintings and sculptures including works by European Old Masters, portraiture, marine painting and modern and contemporary British art. Highlights include masterpieces by Lorenzetti, Frans Hals, Antonio Canaletto, Frederic Lord Leighton, Stanley Spencer, David Hockney, Helen Chadwick and Gillian Wearing. Each year it hosts the Ferens Art Gallery Open Exhibition, an annual exhibition showcasing work by amateur and professional artists. Anyone aged over 16 can enter for the chance to be selected and see their art on display in Hull’s major gallery. The exhibition, which features 200-300 artworks, is scheduled to run again this summer in the gallery and will also be available to view online.

Ferens Art Gallery, Queen Victoria Square, Carr Lane, Hull HU1 3RA.

Tel: 01482 300300,

Georgian Theatre Royal and Museum, Richmond

Britain’s oldest working theatre in its original form and most complete Georgian playhouse, the Georgian Theatre Royal is both a thriving playhouse and a living theatre museum. Originally built in 1788 by actor-manager Samuel Butler, after falling into disrepair, a non-profit trust was formed in the early 1960s to restore it to its former glory. It was expanded in 1996 and underwent major restoration work, including the addition of a museum in 2002. A backstage tour allows visitors to immerse themselves in a Georgian world of greasepaint. There is also the opportunity to see the Woodland Scene, Britain’s oldest set of scenery. Live performances are planned to resume in September.

Georgian Theatre Royal, Victoria Road, Richmond, North Yorkshire, DL10 4DW

Tel: 01748 825252,

The Graves Gallery, Sheffield

The gallery has been the home of Sheffield’s visual arts collection since 1934. It houses permanent displays from the city’s historic and contemporary collection of British and European art and hosts a programme of temporary exhibitions. Artists represented in the extensive collections include JMW Turner, Sir Stanley Spencer, Bridget Riley, Helen Chadwick, Alfred Sisley and Marc Quinn. Currently on permanent display is Grayson Perry’s large-scale tapestry Comfort Blanket (2014), an exhibition called 400 Years of European Art, which features narrative art from the 18th and 19th centuries, religious art from the 16th to the 18th century and landscapes from the 18th and 19th century. The exhibition Abstraction and Art Now looks at the beginnings of abstract art in the 20th century and identity in contemporary art. A Century of Change looks at portraiture and the depiction of everyday life in the art of the 20th century.

The Graves Gallery, Surrey Street, Sheffield S1 1XZ

Tel: 0114 278 2600,

Green Howards Museum, Richmond

There are now more than 35,000 objects in the museum’s collection which started through the interest of a few key individuals. Selected items are part of the permanent exhibition which charts the history of the Green Howards, also known as the 19th Regiment of Foot, the Alexandra Princess of Wales’s Own Yorkshire Regiment from 1688 until it was absorbed into the Yorkshire Regiment in 2006. There are changing displays in the exhibition space which tell the human story of the men who served with the regiment, with events and talks taking place throughout the year. A special exhibition opened in 2019 called Hostile Environment telling the little-known story of the soldiers, including those from the Green Howards, who instead of returning home after Armistice Day were deployed to Russia to try to turn the tide of revolution. The museum’s gift shop and cafe are open and there is a free mini exhibition in the foyer.

The Green Howards Museum, Trinity Church Square, Richmond, North Yorkshire, DL10 4QN

Tel: 01748 826561,

Henry Moore Institute, Leeds

The institute is part of the Henry Moore Foundation which was set up in 1977 by the sculptor Henry Moore (1898-1986) to encourage appreciation of the visual arts, especially sculpture. Working in partnership with Leeds Art Gallery, the institute manages the sculpture collection and archive of Leeds Museums and Galleries. It also hosts a programme of world-class exhibitions of sculpture from renowned British and international artists. The latest exhibition is Portable Sculpture – a group show bringing together the work of 15 artists exploring sculptures that have been designed to fold up, or pack down, or that have been made while on the move. Among the highlights of the show are the monumental inflatable sculptures of US-based Scottish artist Claire Ashley.

Henry Moore Institute, 74 The Headrow, Leeds LS1 3AH

Tel: 0113 246 7467,

The Hepworth, Wakefield

Opened in 2011, the award-winning gallery is set on Wakefield’s historic waterfront and is named after the city’s famous daughter, sculptor Barbara Hepworth. Dedicated galleries showcase her art and working processes, with others displaying Wakefield’s art collection, featuring both British and contemporary art. There is an exciting programme of temporary exhibitions, family-focused events, workshops, talks and tours. The gallery is part of the inaugural Yorkshire Sculpture International organised in conjunction with the Henry Moore Institute, Leeds Art Gallery and Yorkshire Sculpture Park. To celebrate the gallery’s 10th anniversary, a major new exhibition, Barbara Hepworth: Art and Life, has opened at the gallery. It presents an in-depth view of Hepworth’s life, interests, work and legacy. Aside from Hepworth’s most celebrated sculptures, the show also includes rarely seen drawings, paintings and fabric designs.

The Hepworth Wakefield, Gallery Walk, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF1 5AW

Tel: 01924 247360,

Impressions Gallery, Bradford

One of the first specialist photography galleries in the country and with an international reputation, Impressions opened in 1972 and has played a significant role is changing people’s perceptions of photography. The gallery programmes shows that explore issues such as identity, race, gender and politics, presenting world-class exhibitions featuring the work of some of the most sought after contemporary photographers, in the heart of Bradford. It showcases new and recent work as well as historical photography. The current exhibition is Carolyn Mendelsohn’s Being Inbetween, a series of powerful photographic portraits of girls aged between 10 and 12. Alongside the images are personal testimonies from the girls outlining their hopes, dreams and fears. Taken over a period of six years, the portraits are a moving and uplifting snapshot of a whole generation of girls on the cusp of young womanhood. All the exhibitions and most of the events are free.

Impressions Gallery, Centenary Square, Bradford BD1 1SD

Tel: 01274 737843,

Leeds Art Gallery

Situated in the heart of Leeds, the gallery, which opened in 1888, holds a significant collection of modern and contemporary British art – its 20th century British art collection has been designated a collection of national importance. Between January 2016 and October 2017, the gallery underwent an extensive renovation which uncovered the glass roof in the Central Court Gallery which had previously been covered by a false ceiling – it is now a beautiful natural light-filled gallery. In addition to artworks from the wonderful permanent collection on display, which includes work by Damien Hirst, Edward Armitage, August Rodin, Henry Moore, Francis Bacon, Barbara Hepworth, Paula Rego, Jacob Epstein, Tony Cragg and Antony Gormley, the gallery is celebrating reopening with a new exhibition of work from artist Zadie Xa. Moon Poetics 4 Courageous Earth Critters and Dangerous Day Dreamers marks the artist’s first UK solo show. The beautiful Tiled Hall cafe is a lovely spot to take a break.

Leeds Art Gallery, the Headrow, Leeds LS1 3AA

Tel: 0113 378 5350.

National Coal Mining Museum

Get a real taste of Yorkshire’s coal mining heritage, with the unique opportunity to travel 140 metres underground to explore England’s last deep coalmine. Visitors can meet former miners who will guide them on the underground adventure at Caphouse Colliery and tell stories of their own mining careers and of the men, women, children, animals and equipment that worked the mines for centuries before them. Learn about the history of coal mining and the science behind it on the 45-acre rural site which has been ranked by visitors as the one of the top five things to do in West Yorkshire. Outside there is an adventure playground with a special area for under-fives and a chance to meet the amazing pit ponies. Inside there are interactive displays to discover at Hope Pit and the art cart is the place to get creative.

National Coal Mining Museum, Caphouse Colliery, New Road, Overton, Wakefield,


Tel: 01924 848806,

National Emergency Services Museum

More than 50 vehicles and thousands of artefacts are on display over the three floors of this museum which is housed in a magnificent Victorian combined police, fire and ambulance station that dates back to 1898. It is the world’s biggest joint 999 museum, giving a unique insight into the long history and the work of the Emergency Services. Combining hands-on learning with history, the vehicles on display range from manual and horse- powered vehicles through to steam and motor driven. There are loads of exhibits to discover including a 47ft lifeboat, the Insurance Fire Brigade’s beer tokens and real Victorian police cells, complete with smells. Take a ride on a real fire engine, and find out what the Blitz was like in a special exhibition.

National Emergency Services Museum, Old Police/Fire Station, West Bar, Sheffield, South Yorkshire S3 8PT

Tel: 0114 2491999,

National Railway Museum

The museum is home to several iconic locomotives celebrating past, present and future innovation on the railways. Jump on board the high-speed Japanese bullet train and learn about travel on the world’s fastest passenger rail network, before checking out world-changing inventions like George Stephenson’s pioneering Rocket. There are talks and tours from the museum’s explainers including how to turn a locomotive around using the fully functioning turntable. Also, in the Great Hall there is the chance to relive Mallard’s record-breaking 1938 run in the simulator experience. Steeped in locomotive history, before it became a museum, the Great Hall was engine shed number four which was used to house, clear and prepare steam locomotives for the mainline.

National Railway Museum, Leeman Road, York YO26 4XJ

Tel: 03330 161010,

National Science and Media Museum

Set over seven levels, the museum charts the history of photography and cinema, exploring the wonders of science along the way. Start from the basement with a journey through our long love affair with photography. Then, moving through the museum there is the chance to explore the story of the internet, get hands on with science in the Wonderlab and play your way through gaming history in the Games Lounge. The Animation Gallery has original models and artwork from more than 100 features and in the BFI Mediatheque you can browse and watch highlights from the BFI National Archive. There are temporary exhibitions in the gallery spaces – the exhibition to welcome visitors back is In Pursuit of Perfection, the Yorkshire Photographic Union’s annual exhibition with hundreds of images on display celebrating the skill of photographers belonging to 67 clubs across Yorkshire.

National Science and Media Museum, Bradford, BD1 1NQ

Tel: 0844 8563797,

Royal Armouries

Home to Britain’s national collection of arms and armour, the Royal Armouries Museum houses a world-renowned collection of over 75,000 objects. Laid out in five galleries, it has weapons and armour from warriors through the ages and across the globe. Not forgetting our own Royals, there is the opportunity to see Henry VIII’s own sets of foot combat armour and the extraordinary horned helmet presented to him as a gift. There are demonstrations and workshops, with plenty of action outdoors in the tiltyard where visitors can watch jousting, archery and falconry. New for 2021 is Tudor Power & Glory, featuring Henry VIII’s armour made for the Field of Cloth of Gold, and Firefight: Second World War, which displays wartime weapons, ammunition and methods of fighting.

Royal Armouries Museum, Armouries Drive, Leeds, LS10 1LT

Tel: 0113 2201999,

Ryedale Folk Museum

Nestled in the picturesque village of Hutton le Hole, Ryedale Folk Museum is an open-air museum telling the story of the people of the North York Moors. With 20 heritage buildings and thousands of objects beautifully displayed over a six-acre site, the history and stories of Ryedale’s people are brought vividly to life. The museum is welcoming back visitors to experience what life was like for people living in Ryedale in the past. With lovingly recreated family homes and shops, a visit really does feel like stepping back in time. There is also an art gallery on site located close to the museum’s main reception area. The current exhibition is Northern Soul, a journey through the north of England, exploring the personality of its towns and landscape through a series of watercolours and screen prints by Ian Scott Massie.

Ryedale Folk Museum, Hutton le Hole, North Yorkshire YO62 6UA

Tel: 01751 417367,

South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum

With a collection of exhibits from the first ever air show to be staged in Britain, held at Doncaster Racecourse in 1909, to modern fast jets such as Harrier and Meteor and civil light aircraft from around the world, there is something to capture the imagination of any aircraft enthusiast at this museum. Alongside unique aircraft there is a whole host of familiar favourites and a number of displays. These include an area devoted to the Falkland Islands War with various artefacts recovered from the islands, a First World War room and a Second World War ops room along with a uniform display. Cockpits and interactive exhibits are open all year round with special events days including the chance to explore cockpits not normally open to the public or meet the pilots and aircrew who flew some of the iconic aircraft.

South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum, Dakota Way, Doncaster, DN4 7NW

Tel: 01302 761616,

Scarborough Fair Collection

When Graham Atkinson purchased his first steam engine and mechanical organ in the 1980s, few would have imagined it would be the start of a collection of vintage transport that would become famous throughout the world. It is home to the star of the film The Iron Maiden, a 1962 comedy which features the Showman’s Engine, originally built in 1920 as a road locomotive called The Kitchener. There are also 15 mechanical organs in the collection with historical roots. These include the world-famous Munich Oktoberfest organ which performs as a centrepiece to the travelling shows and the Mansfield Wurlitzer which shared the stage with the Beatles. Roll up to take a turn on the fairground rides, which include the Tidman Golden Galloping Horses which were built in 1893, or take a look at the displays of vintage motorcycles, vehicles and classic cars. The museum is set to reopen on June 23.

Scarborough Fair Collection, Flower of May Holiday Park, Lebberston Cliff, Scarborough, Yorkshire, YO11 3NU

Tel: 01723 586698,

Scarborough Art Gallery

Originally called Crescent House, the gallery was built as a family home in the late 1840s and has a fascinating history. It now houses the borough’s permanent collection of fine art which has grown through gifts, bequests and acquisitions since it began in 1947. As well as the permanent collection, the gallery hosts regular temporary exhibitions and showcases work by local, national and internationally renowned artists and it hosts touring work from around the UK. There are works by Frederic Lord Leighton and Frank Brangwyn and prints and drawings by many other notable British artists. There are three exhibitions to enjoy following reopening – Laughton’s Legacies, a display of paintings from the collection of the late Tom Laughton, Scarborough hotelier and brother of movie star Charles Laughton; Scarborough: Our Seaside Town, a heartfelt show presenting collection favourites of the museum’s staff; and Animal Hauntings which explores the relationship between humans and non-humans.

Scarborough Art Gallery, The Crescent, Scarborough YO11 2PW

Tel: 01723 374753

Thackray Medical Museum

An interactive museum dedicated to the history of medicine in the 150-year old Grade II-listed building which was once the Leeds Union Workhouse. The museum looks after over 70,000 objects, books, catalogues and archives relating to the history of medicine and healthcare, displaying around 3,000 of the items across its galleries. After completing a £4m redevelopment, the museum is now welcoming back visitors. It is home to nine galleries, exhibitions and collections which tell the story of Leeds and Yorkshire’s social medical history. You can follow the story of medicine as you wander through the grimy streets of Victorian Leeds, complete with smells and sounds, watch operations taking place in a 19th-century operating theatre, visit a 1970s-style sexual health clinic and discover what it was like to undergo an operation without anaesthetic.

Thackray Medical Museum, Beckett Street, Leeds, LS9 7LN

Tel: 0113 2444343,

The Tetley, Leeds

Housed in the stunning art deco headquarters of the former Tetley Brewery, the Tetley is a pioneering centre for contemporary art. It has a beautiful, large, high-ceilinged, airy central atrium space which has played host to some splendid installations since the Tetley opened in 2013. There are a number of smaller gallery spaces plus a busy and welcoming Bar and Kitchen. The gallery reopened on May 21 with a new exhibition, From This World, to That Which is Come from artist Mel Brimfield. The show is the culmination of nearly two years work based on her research residency at Bethlem Royal Hospital’s National Psychosis Unit and Kings College Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience. The show’s title comes from John Bunyan’s 1678 parable The Pilgrim’s Progress, a fictional pilgrimage from darkness to enlightenment, and Brimfield reimagines the narrative as a loose allegory for the journey to recovery from a collapse of mental health.

The Tetley, Hunslet Road, Leeds LS10 1JQ

Tel: 0113 320 2323,

World of James Herriot

With the huge popularity of the recent C5 series of All Creatures Great and Small, this museum devoted to arguably the world’s most famous vet is going to be very busy in the coming months. As visitors step through the famous red door on Kirkgate in Thirsk, they enter into the fully-restored site of James Herriot’s original 1940s home and veterinary practice – known in his books, and the TV series, as Skeldale House, Darrowby. The home retains many of the original furnishings and the dispensary is crammed with fascinating ancient remedies. You can travel back in time to see what life was like when James was practising, see the car he drove, step into the TV set, try your hand at being a vet yourself and even experience what it was like to hide in a wartime air raid shelter.

World of James Herriot, 23 Kirkgate, Thirsk, North Yorkshire YO7 1PL.

Tel: 01845 524234,

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Set in 500 acres of historic parkland near Wakefield, with space to run around and more than 80 works of touchable art in the open air, this is a truly family-friendly art gallery. The open-air collection is made up of long and short-term loans, gifts from artists and individuals as well as site-specific commissions. There are walks around the lakes and surrounding woodland with bridges, follies and historical features including a Greek-style summer house and a now land-locked Boat House. The indoor galleries will be reopening from later this month. The Underground Gallery reopened on May 17, showcasing the work of renowned Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos; the Weston Gallery reopened on May 18 with a special exhibition of rare lithographs and etchings by Joan Miro. On May 29 the Longside Gallery will open with Breaking the Mould: Sculpture by Women since 1945, a major survey of female sculptors from the Arts Council Collection.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield, WF4 4LG

Tel: 01924 832631,

Yorkshire Air Museum

The Yorkshire Air Museum sits on the site of former RAF Elvington, a Second World War airfield which was used extensively by Allied bomber crews during the conflict. It is also the home of the Allied Air Forces Memorial. There is a huge range of exhibits and collections which span almost the entire history of flight, from the early pioneers of aviation, through both world wars and on through the Cold War era. Visitors can see more than 60 historic aircraft and vehicles with one of the most comprehensive post-war collections in the entire country. There are different exhibition areas which cover the history of aviation both in Yorkshire and across the world. The museum reopened on May 22. However, some areas will remain closed including the NAAFI restaurant, although drinks and snacks will be available elsewhere on site, and the Control Tower with radio room and control room is currently undergoing a refresh and refurbishment.

Yorkshire Air Museum, Elvington, York, YO41 4AU

Tel: 01904 608595,

York Castle Museum

Discover hundreds of years of York’s social history in one place. The most iconic part of the museum, which reopened on May 19, is Kirkgate, a recreated Victorian street which formed the centrepiece of the museum when it first opened in 1938. You can also see recreations of Dick Turpin’s prison cell, a cutting-edge costume collection and learn about York’s sweet history of chocolate. The museum galleries hold thousands of historic objects which bring the past to life in different ways. The Sixties exhibition aims to recreate the spirit of that decade which saw significant change in many areas of public and private life. There is also a collection of miniature marvels from all around the world, a visual history of how ice cream was made in Victorian times and the fascinating story of a Rowntree’s cocoa tin taken to the Antarctic by explorer Ernest Shackleton in 1909.

York Castle Museum, Tower Street, York, YO1 9RY

Tel: 01904 687687,