Hollytrees Museum Exterior with Wisteria

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Hollytrees Museum is located in the beautiful grounds of Castle Park. This attractive Georgian town house, dating from 1718 houses the town's social history museum, showcasing three centuries of fascinating toys, costume, clocks and decorative arts.

Discover what family life was like for the rich and poor and be transported back to the days before washing machines. Peek through the windows of the famous and much loved Hollytrees Dolls House to discover the goings on of Hollytrees Mansion in the 18th century.

The clocks and watches on display in the aptly named Bernard Mason Gallery range in period from the mid 17th century through to the mid 19th century. The display includes the first clock Bernard Mason bought, a range of long case clocks and also some of the earlier lantern clocks, made by makers such as William Bacon, John Smorthwait and Nathaniel Hedge. 

Be transported back to your childhood with displays of vintage toys and games and learn about the origins of the much loved nursery rhyme Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star and its connection to Colchester.

Access may be limited for users of larger wheelchairs, a manual wheelchair is available for use. Owing to fire regulations, groups of more than two wheelchair users need to pre-book.

Following a period of closure due to coronavirus restrictions some items and tactile objects remain off-display for the time being.

Hollytrees Museum is home to the Visit Colchester Information Centre, the best place to visit for information and advice on visiting Colchester and the surrounding area as well as the place to buy local gifts and souvenirs.

Book Tickets

Guide Prices

Free entry


Tuesday, 13th June 2023 - Thursday, 18th January 2024

Will Teather's Globe in Colchester CastleThe Colchester GlobesInternationally renowned artist, Will Teather brings three unique artwork to Colchester located across the city centre.
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  • Disabled access

Booking & Payment Details

  • Credit cards accepted (no fee)
  • Free Entry


  • Children welcome


  • Education/study area
  • Facilities for educational visits

Property Facilities

  • Dogs not accepted (except guidedogs)
  • Gift shop
  • Public toilets
  • Smoking not allowed

Map & Directions


Road Directions

Hollytrees Museum is situated in the Castle Park, just off Colchester High Street.

Hollytrees Museum


Castle Park, Colchester, Essex, CO1 1UG

Tel: 01206 282920


  • Visit EnglandVistEngland VAQAS Gold VistEngland VAQAS Gold 2018

Opening Times

Season (1 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023)
Monday - Saturday10:00 - 17:00
Bank Holiday10:00 - 17:00

Monday - Saturday: 10am-5pm


Visit Colchester Information Centre with WisteriaVisit Colchester Information Centre, ColchesterHome to lots of information about Colchester & the surrounding area, the knowledgeable & friendly staff are here to help you on what to do, where to go or places to stay. The place to buy gifts and souvenirs, book guided tours & coach trips

Visit Colchester shop. Colchester Mugs, cards and placemats.Visit Colchester Gift Shop, ColchesterThe Visit Colchester Information Centre has a fantastic Gift Shop selling Colchester Souvenirs and locally made gifts.