This list of museums is provided as a service to our members. All the museums in this list have jewellery, sometimes rather loosely defined, in their collections, but some may not be on display. Please check in advance before visiting a museum, to avoid disappointment. The descriptions are provided by the museums themselves, or by members.
Please tell us here if there are any other jewellery museums which we should add to this list, or if anything needs correcting.
UK - England
Assembly Rooms, Bennett Street, BATH, BA1 2QH
+ 44 (0)1225 477173
There is a small collection of costume jewellery, numbering around 1500 pieces and dating from the 18th to the 21st century. The majority of the material is 19th and 20th century, including hat pins, buckles, brooches, necklaces, earrings, bracelets and tiaras. Although the costume jewellery is not on display in the museum, there is an active study facility to enable access to the collection.
Black Country Living Museum
Tipton Road, Dudley, West Midlands, DY1 4SQ.
+ 44 (0)121 557 9643
Large open-air museum, with exhibition of historic and current Bilston enamels.
Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Chamberlain Square, Birmingham, B3 3DH
+44 121 303 2834
Enamel and metal wares from the Arts and Crafts Movement.
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
Royal Pavilion Gardens, Brighton, East Sussex, BN1 1EE
+ 44 (0)1273 292882
In 1986 Brighton Museum and Art Gallery purchased a collection of Art Nouveau jewellery from Charles and Barbara Robertson. The jewellery includes a number of fascinating individual pieces from several countries.
The Fitzwilliam Museum
Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1RB
The Department of Applied Arts is responsible for about 20,000 pieces of decorative arts and sculpture from Europe, the Middle East, India and the Far East, including silver, pewter, jewellery and snuffboxes.
Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum
Clarence Street, Cheltenham, GL50 3JT
(+44) 01242 237431
The museum has an outstanding permanent collection including Arts & Crafts silver and jewellery by Charles Ashbee's Guild of Handicraft based at Chipping Campden.
Colchester Castle Museum
Castle Park, Colchester.
Postal address: Museum Resource Centre, 14 Ryegate Road, Colchester, Essex CO1 1YG
The museum contains archaeological jewellery from the middle Bronze Age to medieval, with a particular emphasis on early Roman (before ca. 200 AD).
Dartford Borough Museum
Market Street, Dartford, Kent DA1 1EU
The museum contains a collection of Anglo-Saxon items, covering the cemetery at Riseley, which dates from the 5th to the 7th Century. It shows the variety of jewellery, brooches and bead necklaces which were found on the cemetery site.
41 Long Street, Devizes, Wiltshire, SN10 1NS
+44 (0)1380 727369
Bronze-age treasures, including a beautifully decorated gold lozenge, a magnificent bronze dagger with a gold-covered hilt, a gold fitting from a dagger sheath, a ceremonial axe, gold beads, necklaces, earrings, pendants and other items of gold jewellery, and a unique jet disc, are displayed in a brand new £750,000 gallery featuring high quality graphics and leading-edge reconstructions.
Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery
Chequer Road, Doncaster DN1 2AE
Includes around 450 pieces of jewellery donated by Anne Hull Grundy.
Harrogate Museums and Arts
Mercer Art Gallery, Swan Road, Harrogate HG1 2SA
The collection includes necklaces, bracelets and a large number of brooches given by Mrs Hull-Grundy. The majority is of 19th or early 20th-century date. There are also some items given to a Harrogate man by the last Czarina, including a pair of Faberge cufflinks. Most is in store, although items are shown in temporary exhibitions in the Royal Pump Room Museum. The reserve collections could be made available for research by appointment.
Chesterholm Museum, Bardon Mill, Hexham, Northumberland, NE47 7JN
+44 (0)1434 344277
There are many items of Roman jewellery on display at Vindolanda - including a jet betrothal medallion showing the happy couple on the front, and, on the back, an image of clasped hands, the Roman sign for an agreement or a promise, as well as a collection of gold and silver finger rings, some depicting gods and goddesses, and some with messages on them.
9 Causeway, Horsham, W Sussex, RH12 1HE
+44 (0)1403 254959
The drawers contain a variety of items; shoes ranging in age from 1670 to 2000, hats, hat pins, costume jewellery, ethnographic jewellery, chatelaines, purses and handbags. A small cabinet displays a selection of buttons whilst a large graphic panel explains how to look after your prized possessions.
Hove Museum & Art Gallery
19 New Church Road, Hove BN3 4AB
Includes jewellery donated by Mrs Hull Grundy.
High Street, Ipswich IP1 3QH
A small number of pieces of jewellery in both precious and non-precious materials from India, China, East & West Africa, the Pacific and South America are on display in the museum. There is also a small collection of about 300 items, consisting of primarily 19th and 20th-century costume jewellery, including buckles, brooches, hat pins, bracelets and earrings, in store.
Abbott Hall Art Gallery
Kendal, Cumbria LA9 5AL
+44 (0) 1539 722464
Enamel and metal wares from the Arts and Crafts Movement.
The Collection: Art and Archaeology in Lincolnshire
Danes Terrace, Lincoln LN2 1LP
+44 (0)1522 550990
The museum combines the decorative and fine art collections of the Usher Gallery and the archaeological collections of the former City and County Museum, Lincoln. The small collection of jewellery ranges in date from the Bronze Age through to the 20th century, and comprises items of personal adornment, pocket watches and enamels.
Great Russell Street London WC1B 3DG
+44 (0)20 7323 8000
The British Museum's jewellery collections cover world cultures from about 5000 BC to the present day. Much is on public display throughout the different geographical and cultural sections of the museum, while more is accessible via the museum's online collection catalogue.
The Fan Museum
12 Crooms Hill, Greenwich, London SE10 8ER
+44 (0)208 305 1441
The Fan Museum is the only museum in the world devoted entirely to every aspect of fans and fan making.
Hampstead Lane, Hampstead London NW3 7JR
+44 (0)208 348 1286
The decorative arts collections have expanded and now include the Draper Gift of portrait miniatures, the Lady Maufe Collection of shoe buckles and part of the Hull Grundy Collection of jewellery.
Museum of London
London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN
0870 444 3851
The fine jewellery collection includes groups assembled by such notable collectors as Dame Joan Evans, Baroness D'Erlanger, Lady Cory and Queen Mary. It is particularly rich in sentimental and mourning jewels and good quality costume jewellery including a large collection of chatelaines. Includes the Cheapside hoard, the greatest hoard of Elizabethan and Jacobean jewellery in the world.
National Maritime Museum
Romney Road, Greenwich. SE10 9NF
The Museum has approximately 448 jewellery items dating from the 16th to the late 20th century. The collection is diverse but consists mainly of seals.
Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road, London SW7 5BD
+44 (0)20 7942 5000
Contains major collection of raw, processed and mounted gem stones.
Tower of London
London, England, EC3N 4AB
0844 482 7777
Be dazzled by the 23,578 gems that make up the Crown Jewels, including the world’s most famous diamonds. You'll find this amazing collection under armed guard in the Jewel House.
United Grand Lodge
Freemasons' Hall, 60 Great Queen Street, London WC2B 5AZ
+44 (0) 20 7831 9811
The Library and Museum of Freemasonry houses one of the finest collections of Masonic material in the world. It contains an extensive collection of objects with Masonic decoration including pottery and porcelain, glassware, silver, furniture and clocks, jewels and regalia.
V&A (Victoria & Albert Museum) South Kensington
Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL
+44 (0)20 7942 2000
The William and Judith Bollinger Jewellery Gallery displays 3,500 jewels from the V&A's jewellery collection, one of the finest and most comprehensive in the world.
The Wallace Collection
Hertford House, Manchester Square, London W1U 3BN
+44 (0)207 563 9500
The collection includes gold boxes, miniatures, sculpture and medieval and renaissance works of art such as maiolica, glass and Limoges enamels.
Maidstone Museum & Bentlif Art Gallery
St Faith's Street, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1LH
There is a modest jewellery collection, a large proportion of which was gifted by Anne Hull-Grundy. There are also items of jewellery in the Human History Collections as part of the Archaeology holdings - in particular Roman and Anglo-Saxon pieces.
Platt Hall Gallery of Costume
Platt Hall, Rusholme, Manchester M14 5LL
0161 224 5217
The Gallery of Costume has mainly 19th-century jewellery, including costume-related items such as chatelaines, buckles and decorated buttons. It also has 20th-century costume jewellery. Home of the Meredith Collection of buttons.
Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (mima)
Centre Square, Middlesbrough, TS1 2AZ
+44 (0) 1642 931232
mima has an outstanding collection of contemporary jewellery, one of the finest publicly-owned jewellery collections in the UK. Featuring beautiful, provocative and fascinating pieces, the collection includes work by Ted Noten, Gijs Bakker, Karl Fritsch, Wendy Ramshaw, Otto Künzli and Felieke van der Leest. mima and Teesside University, in a joint project, have converted a 1,292 square foot space that was previously a storeroom into a purpose-built gallery for the 228 piece collection, which opened in autumn 2014.
Northampton Museum and Art Gallery
Guildhall Road, Northampton, NN1 1D
01604 838 111
Collection of everything to do with footware, including 18th-century shoe buckles.
Castle Meadow, Norwich, Norfolk NR1 3JU
The jewellery collection, presented to the museum by Anne Hull Grundy, consists of some fine 18th-century paste and a wide range of mid to late 19th-century pieces.
Friar Lane, Off Maid Marian Way, Nottingham. NG1 6EL
Nottingham Castle, a magnificent 17th-century ducal mansion built on the site of the original Medieval Castle, houses collections of decorative art and paintings, including jewellery.
Beaumont Street, Oxford, OX1 2PH
Pitt Rivers Museum
South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PP
The Museum holds archaeological and ethnographic objects from all parts of the world. It contains a wide variety of ornaments worn to mark stages and statuses in people’s lives.
Smallhythe, Tenterden, TN30 7NG
Smallhythe was the home of Ellen Terry, the celebrated stage actress, for the last 30 years of her life. Much of her jewellery remains, and is shown in a series of cabinets throughout the property. Among some 150 items are highlights including a splendid gold chain formerly owned by Fanny Kemble, an Alma-Tadema smokey quartz brooch worn during her role as Lady Macbeth, and her famous 'Castle on the Rock' ring designed and made by John Paul Cooper.
Southampton City Museums
Collections Management Centre (Local Collections), 29/31 City Industrial Estate, Southern Road, Southampton, Hants, SO15 1HG.
There is a comprehensive collection of jewellery and decorative costume accessories, from a 17th-century Royalist heart-shaped locket to Victoriana and modern costume jewellery, including pins, buckles, buttons and badges, watches, posy holders and chatelaines. The collection of 18th and 19th-century Mourning Jewellery, of which most was presented to the museum by Mrs Anne Hull-Grundy, is of particular interest. The collection is not on display but is easily accessible by appointment at the Collections Centre.
The Shoe Museum
40 High Street, Street, Somerset BA16 0EQ
The museum shows the history of the Clark family and the development of shoemaking in Street, including shoe buckles.
Pannett Park, Whitby, N. Yorks, YO21 1RE
Whitby Museum has one of the best collections of jet artifacts in the world with over 500 very varied examples which include jewellery (brooches, pendants), chess tables, busts, models of Whitby Abbey and bible covers
Bantock House and Park
Finchfield Road, Wolverhampton WV3 9LQ
Wolverhampton and Bilston were centres of cut-steel making in the 18th century. The museum collection includes rare examples of brooches, bangles, button covers, shoe buckles and hair ornaments.
Bilston Craft Gallery
Mount Pleasant, Bilston WV14 7LU
Craftsense is Bilston Craft Gallery's permanent exhibition displaying the best of its craft and decorative art collections from the last 300 years, together with works from some leading figures of the contemporary craft scene. At the heart of the exhibition are over 100 world renowned Bilston enamels.
The Ulster Museum
Botanic Gardens, Belfast BT9 5AB
+44 (0) 28 9044 0000
The bulk of the jewellery collection of about 700 pieces is the gift of Mrs Anne Hull Grundy, art and jewellery historian, who gave us a collection dating from the 16th to the mid-20th century. Some particularly strong sections are our holdings of 18th-century paste, 19th-century jewellery in all its variety, and Art Nouveau jewellery. Our collection of 19th-century Irish jewellery is probably the most complete in existence. The contemporary jewellery collection aims to build on the strengths of the historic collection. The museum also contains prehistoric and early medieval Irish jewellery, and treasure from the Spanish Armada ship Girona.
Aberdeen Art Gallery
Schoolhill, Aberdeen, AB10 1FQ
The collection is particularly strong in the areas of metalwork, jewellery and enamelling, featuring work by the early Aberdeen silversmiths, the Aberdeen artist, James Cromar Watt, and contemporary makers, such as Malcolm Appleby, Maureen Edgar and Michael Lloyd.
National Museum of Scotland
Chambers Street Edinburgh, EH1 1JF
0131 225 7534