Topsham Museum

Topsham Museum

Topsham Museum is housed in one of a group of late 17th century buildings overlooking the Exe Estuary. Following completion of a stunning new River gallery, the Museum was 'long-listed' for the Art Fund Prize in 2008.

Part of the Museum's focus is on Topsham's maritime history - one particular showpiece is the River Gallery, completed in 2007, featuring unique historic river craft. Visitors can also enjoy the furnished period rooms of the original house and the Sail Loft with its historical timeline of the town's general history. Other interesting exhibits include wildlife of the Exe Estuary, local trades and organisations and memorabilia of the film star Vivien Leigh.

Visit website

  • The Sail Loft

    Displays the history of Topsham from Prehistoric times: Shipbuilding, fishing and maritime trade, including ship models, shipwrights' tools, maps, photographs, paintings, documents etc. Other exhibits include a model of Topsham as it was in 1900.

  • The River Gallery

    The Gallery holds a collection of historic Exe river boats. Four boats were saved after the closure of the Exeter Maritime Museum: the famous Cygnet, the Market Boat, "Ruby" (a salmon boat) and a Skiff.

  • The House

    Dates from the late 17th century - two rooms are furnished in that period. The kitchen of Miss Holman, the founder of the Museum, has been preserved. Memorabilia in the Vivien Leigh Room (her sister in law) includes the nightdress Vivien wore in the film "Gone with the Wind"

  • The Underloft

    The Underloft houses the popular Museum Tearoom, temporary exhibitions and the Museum Shop, selling unusual and interesting gifts, books on local subjects and Topsham items.

  • Local History Room

    A comfortable study space for visitors to consult our extensive public collection of local reference materials, census indexes, local research projects, digitised information and details of nearly 150 Topsham families. It is also the venue for our seasonal exhibitions

Admission & prices

The Museum is now closed for the winter and re-opens on March 26th. During the 2016 season, the Museum will be open in the afternoons on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, (plus Tuesdays in August), 2pm-5pm from 1st April until 30th October.

Last admission 4.30pm.


The Museum is run entirely by volunteers and your kind donations keep it open.

Find us

From Topsham Station, walk down Holman Way to 'Route 2' cafe mini roundabout, take 2nd exit - The Strand. 300 yards along on left you will find the Museum. Or walk along Fore Street to 'Route 2' cafe.
Parking: Holman Way & the Quay.
Buses: T & 5

Museum news

View all news articles

  • Did someone in your family fight at the Battle of Jutland in 1916

    Did someone in your family fight at the Battle of Jutland in 1916

    Was your ancestor at the Battle of Jutland?  Descendants of those who served at sea in the First World War have been invited to take part in commemoration events in May marking the 100th anniversary of the naval bat......

    Read article

  • Luxon Family

    Luxon Family

    As part of our research for next year's exhibition on WW1 we came across an article in a local newspaper dated February 1915 showing photographs of six brothers from the Luxon family of Topsham: Two brothers in the Roya......

    Read article


  • Toilets On-Site
  • Wheelchair access
  • Cafe on-site
  • Childrens activities
  • Gift Shop

Our beautiful riverside garden is open all year. During the season, home-made teas are served in the cafe or gardens. Do visit our gift shop. Group visits of up to 15 can be arranged for guided tours between April and October by prior arrangement.

There are always a number of special exhibitions spread through the year. A lift from the River Gallery provides disabled access to the updated Sail Loft.
Cream Teas and home-made cakes are served from 2.30pm to 4.30pm and there is a shop which sells a wide range of memorabilia, local history publications and high quality gifts.

Group visits may be made outside opening times by prior arrangement.

25 The Strand

T: 01392 873244

Upcoming events

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Topsham Museum

25 The Strand
Topsham, DEVON EX3 0AX