Museum History

Mrs Unwin’s Spectacles

This article begins by closely examining the pair of Mrs Unwin’s spectacles held in the museum’s collection – their frame, lenses and case. For each of these components Nicola Durbridge outlines a history of its development up to the late eighteenth century, before moving on to consider the different ways

Read More »

William Cowper’s Missing Will

Since the start of the COVID pandemic, the National Archives at Kew has allowed free downloads of digital records from its website, a concession which will continue for as long as it’s only able to open for a very limited number of researchers. Seizing the opportunity, Trustee Amanda Molcher came

Read More »

The Cowper & Newton Story Begins – 250 years

The Road to Olney – The Cowper & Newton Story @ 250 We are often asked how William Cowper and John Newton came to meet up in Olney.  So in 2017, the 250th anniversary of William taking up residence in Olney, we tracked back through all their correspondence and had

Read More »

Lace Making

Lace Making at the Cowper & Newton Museum Although the Lace Room is currently closed for exciting redevelopment, we are continuing to share our love of lace and the role in played in the life of the people of Olney and the surrounding area. This is not an exhaustive account

Read More »
Category filter

At The Museum

A Peek Inside Orchard Side House

Take a peek inside Orchard Side House as we begin to unveil some of our hidden secrets. Visit the ‘Welcome’ page for a short guide to the other delights we have in store for you during your visit.

Read More »
Page from the first edition of the Olney Hymns hymn book showing the first verse of Faith's Review and Expectation now known by its first line as Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace & The Olney Hymns ‘to my dear friends in the parish and neighbourhood of Olney, for whose use the hymns were originally composed;…’ Did you know? ‘Amazing Grace’ was penned by the Rev John Newton during his time here in Olney. ‘Amazing Grace’ was originally titled ‘Faith’s Review and Expectations’ . It was published by John in

Read More »
Three Hares Gallery

The Three Hares Art Gallery

The Three Hares Gallery is located on the top floor of the Museum building and holds monthly exhibitions.  Previous exhibitions have included artists who work in watercolours, acrylics, oils, pastels, drawings, prints, photography, ceramics, woodcraft and textiles, including felt, patchwork and tapestries. Sadly, due to Coronavirus safety measures, the Gallery is currently only open to

Read More »
Summer-house-garden-2016mpn

Flower & Summer House Gardens

Visit our tranquil & historic Gardens. William Cowper was an innovative gardener at a time when seeds & plants were arriving from North America. Find out more here, including a plan of the gardens.

Read More »

Book Museum Tickets

Our Museum building remains CLOSED.  We are opening our gardens on limited entry.  The Cowper & Newton Museum gardens will be open to welcome you on Wednesday 5th August 10.30 – 12.15 and Saturday 8th August 10.30 – 12.15

(Follow our social media accounts or check back here for further opening days & times as they become available)