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Welcome to Cumberland House - The Natural History Museum

Entrance to Cumberland House Natural History Museum is FREE!

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Portsmouth is a very special place for wildlife in Britain. It has many different habitats in a very small area, and at Portsmouth Natural History Museum you can explore them all.

The museum tells the story of the wild things of the riverbank, marshes, woods and urban areas of Portsmouth. Have a look for the heron stalking its prey and the Brent geese coming into land after their 3000 km flight from the arctic. You can also learn about Portsmouth's geology and take a look at some specimens from ancient times. The displays are designed to allow visitors a view of the natural world as they could never see it in real life - up close and in depth. Click here to find out more about our new exhibition.

Portsmouth Natural History Museum also houses a butterfly house, and the butterflies fly from May to September.

Brownie Centenary Trails

To help Portsmouth celebrate the Brownie Centenary, local Rainbows, Brownies and Guides are invited to take part in wildlife themed trails around Cumberland House during the Easter holidays. Download the trail below and complete it in the museum from 5th-21st April 2014, hand it in at the front desk and you could win a prize for your unit!

Brownies Trail Guides Trail Rainbow Trail

Information for Schools

There is plenty to do on your visit to Cumberland House and lots of links to National Curriculum topics.
Discover the habitats of Portsmouth. See butterflies from May to September and look out for other live specimens. See how artists are
inspired by nature. Touch some fossils. Examine the teeth of predators and prey. It can link to topics like plants and animals, classification, adaptation, life cycles, earth, sun and moon. Key Stage 1 children especially enjoy seeing Emily the dinosaur!

Click here for our Winter/Spring 2013-2014 Newsletter for schools

Click here for more information about our Camera Obsura workshops for schools in March 2014

Booking a Group Visit

For all enquiries and group visits please telephone 023 9283 4744 / 4737 or contact us by email stating clearly your name, school contact details, number/age of children, which museum/exhibition you are interested in and your preferred dates/times.


Portsmouth City CouncilAll pictures are copyright of Portsmouth Museums and Record Service

Portsmouth Natural History Museum
Visit the City Museums site
Visit the Records Office site
Visit the D-day museum site
Visit the Charles Dickens Birthplace site
Visit the Southsea Castle site
Visit the Portsmouth Museum Portal site

The front of the natural history museum

Looking at butterfly

Inside the butterfly house