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“Interesting little museum” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Herschel Museum of Astronomy

Herschel Museum of Astronomy
19 New King St., Bath BA1 2LB, England
44 01225 446865
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Ranked #16 of 69 Attractions in Bath
Type: Historic Sites, History Museums, Specialty Museums, Museums
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Attraction details
Owner description: Located in the home of William Herschel and his sister, this museum is dedicated to the many achievements of the Herschels, who were noted astronomers and talented musicians during the 18th century.
London
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Interesting little museum”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2012

This museum is based in the house Herschel was living in when he made his name as an astronomer. Despite its small size it packs a lot of displays and information in. Herschel may be best known for discovering Uranus, but there was much more to his story than that and it is all detailed here. The staff were enthusiastic and friendly and I would definitely recommend a visit.

Visited October 2012
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Devizes, United Kingdom
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309 reviews 309 reviews
195 attraction reviews
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657 helpful votes 657 helpful votes
“Bath's astronomical history”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2012

The William Herschel House & Museum is to be found at 19 New King St. It was from this house that that he discovered Uranus in 1781 using a telescope of his own design. Herschel pushed out the boundaries of astronomical knowledge during his time and particularly improved upon the building and design of telescopes.

The house was inaugurated as a museum in 1981, exactly 200 years after his planetary discovery. The property was fully restored in 1981 and then again in 2000. It is by no means grand but represents a middle-grade Georgian townhouse, typical of artisans and tradesmen of the epoch. It is part of a terrace dating from 1764 and is laid out over five floors. Although Herschel was in fact an amateur astronomer, his discoveries were enormously significant. Apart from his discovery of Uranus, he also increased the dimensions of our own galaxy via his observations, discovered the satellites of Saturn, the rotation of that planet’s ring system, and the motions of binary stars.

A must see for anyone interested in astronomy, possibly not of such interest to the layman. It is also rather hard to locate so take a street map with you.

Visited October 2012
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Palo Alto, CA
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137 reviews 137 reviews
32 attraction reviews
Reviews in 89 cities Reviews in 89 cities
98 helpful votes 98 helpful votes
“Homage to pioneers of astronomy”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2012

This small museum is focused on the life of William Herschel and his sister Caroline. It displays William's instruments and tools and presents the story of the Herschels' lives and their important discoveries. The displays are well presented and interesting - at least to this scientist. It is located in the place where he did his work, just a short walk from central Bath

Visited September 2012
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Penzance, United Kingdom
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5 reviews 5 reviews
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“very in-depth”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2012

Quite in-depth for someone with a casual interest but well worth a visit. Be aware that it is only open from 1pm and it isn't the easiest place to find. Quite tucked away! Staff were friendly and the audio tour was jam packed with information!

Visited September 2012
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HerschelMuseum, Manager at Herschel Museum of Astronomy, responded to this review, October 4, 2012
Thank you for visiting the Herschel Museum and are pleased you enjoyed the experience. We would like to point out that although we are open from 1 pm during the week, at weekends and bank holidays opening hours are from 11 am - 5 pm. Some visitors do find it difficult to find us but as a non-local authority museum we have no control over the fingerpost signs pointing to attractions in Bath. This system of fingerposts is currently being phased out and the good news is that the standing kiosk maps now in place around the city clearly mark the situation of the Herschel Museum which we hope will give visitors the information they need.
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Tralee
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
14 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“A little gem - perhaps too well-hidden”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2012

The one negative note I would strike would be that the museum is rather difficult to find - some rather vague signage led us hither and thither across Bath, until we eventually found the rather petite house where Uranus's discoverer lived. The museum is organised by voluntary staff, and after the elderly gentleman on duty gave us the details of how the site worked, we watched an entertaining 10-minute film on the family narrated by Patrick Moore in the vault. After this, you go up the stairs and explore the various rooms, maintained in Georgian style and containing the various astronomical and musical equipment brother and sister would have used on a daily basis. Certainly, it is constantly stressed how critical a role Caroline played in her brother's work, and indeed the discoveries made in her own right. The £5 fee was extremely reasonable, and anyone with the slightest interest in astronomy or science will not be disappointed.

Visited September 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HerschelMuseum, Manager at Herschel Museum of Astronomy, responded to this review, October 4, 2012
We are pleased that you obviously enjoyed your visit to the Herschel Museum and were warmly welcomed by the volunteer in charge of the admissions desk. We are really fortunate to have such an excellent group of volunteers who help in many areas, however this is not a not a volunteer-run museum, our staff consist of a Curator, Learning Officer and Manager but we are always looking to recruit new volunteers to join us.
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