We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Unique, bizarre, thought-provoking, fascinating.”

Littledean Jail Museum
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Reviewed April 22, 2013

First of all, anyone who finds this collection offensive not only hasn't read the numerous warning signs but also has failed to grasp the purpose of this collection. There are a lot of exhibits with a dark side, the most memorable being the Holocaust collection - any museum presenting this period of history is going to be harrowing, and it is.

Equally significant are the displays on fascism and in particular British Nazis, the Blackshirts, connections to German Naziism - and the support of some areas of the British press. And yes, you really could buy Action Man in Nazi uniform. This is not a "celebration" though - just a presentation of historical artifacts as in any museum, without any attempt to airbrush out the less pleasant aspects. The same applies to the Ku Klux Klan exhibits - they might stir up memories we would rather forget, but that is what museums are for.

Other areas of the museum are devoted to crime and criminals, with some interesting personal insights into the lives of some of the more notorious crooks. Distasteful perhaps, but the fact that the museum makes much (yes, perhaps too much) use of newspaper cuttings just reflects what people wanted to read about at the time. There is quite a lot of raunchy content (again, mainly consisting of tabloid cuttings) but even in the no-children "fetish room" there is nothing that could be considered really pornographic - just lots of bums and boobs.

There are sections devoted to the SAS, policing, etc. plus the likes of Lara Croft, Spiderman and a Dalek alongside the SS uniforms. The Quadrophenia collection is also worth a look. Negatives - a few summary captions would be useful, and the acres of tabloid cuttings can be overwhelming. I would imagine it can get pretty crowded at peak times too. So if you want an unsanitised look at 20th century history, and aren't the sort who looks for things to be offended about, this is definitely worth 2 or 3 hours of your time.

59  Thank MB58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (338)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
All reviews
"on display"
in 25 reviews
"bring children"
in 4 reviews
"eye opening"
in 4 reviews
"taking children"
in 4 reviews
"dark side"
in 4 reviews
"thought provoking"
in 4 reviews
"interesting place"
in 9 reviews
"large collection"
in 5 reviews
"per adult"
in 4 reviews
"northern soul"
in 9 reviews
"kray twins"
in 6 reviews
"interesting stuff"
in 4 reviews
"serial killer"
in 4 reviews
"exhibits"
in 55 reviews
"sensitive"
in 20 reviews
"dean"
in 12 reviews
"paraphernalia"
in 4 reviews
Filter

299 - 303 of 338 reviews

Reviewed April 7, 2013

Less a museum, more a dodgy shrine to Fascists, Ku Klux Klan and obvious racism and unsubtle "nail 'em up" politics. And bits of newspaper. Tawdry.

5  Thank Billhartzia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

If you looked it up on the internet before visiting you won't be one of the people who thought they were going to look at the history of the jail itself or be one of the people who were offended by the contents of this bizarre and unusual collection.

I was very excited about going and couldn't believe that I had not heard of this place before (only living some 25 miles away) and I was not disappointed. Yes it is cluttered and confused and can feel like a visual, psychological and emotional assault on the senses but it is an important and harrowing testimony to the shadow side of human beings...and we all have our shadow sides.

We did take the kids (aged 13 and 14) and they managed 2.5 hours until they were ready to go...but this was mostly down to a lot of the collection being newspaper articles and their technologically wired not being able to cope without the moving image or some other kind of interaction that the old newspaper clippings . The bonus of this is , of course, I only felt I saw a fraction and read a fraction of what I wanted and will be going back again very soon.

The kids were touched by the striped pajamas of holocaust victims ,and for that alone, making such a horror tangible to them, in a time when the last living witnesses are few, it has to be a worth while visit.

It could be set out in a more easy way for the eye (to be able to read all the clippings) , and it could have more summaries by the side of many newspaper clippings but hey... I love the quirkiness of it and the idiosyncratic style of the whole exhibition.

It takes a few hours of getting home for this overpowering visit to really catch up with you and to hit you somewhere deep in the darkness of your psyche and to reach some further understanding of the human condition. (Methinks those who protest too much have too much to hide/repress/ suppress)

I was glad it is owned by Andy (an old punk rocker ) who is not, as rumour had it , an ex copper. That for me , would have been disturbing. I loved the bit out the back dedicated to Quadrophenia and Northern Soul.

And I love the fact that the owner, Andy, lives there with his family.

57  Thank BekiM_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2013

Can I just say we have visited a few Times with and without our children and I really feel some of the views expressed on here are unfair and from people who prefer themeparks or garden centres! It's not for the fainthearted and there are plenty of warnings online and throughout the bulding regarding some of the more unsuitable exhibits. It is a huge collection of macabre and disturbing pieces but its,truly fascinating and like it or not it is our history. What you see on the website and advertising leaflet is what you get when you visit. It doesn't cost the earth and is in a truly beautiful setting. Allow a few hours to read about the exhibits and I must say the holocaust area has never left my mind! A great collection and thank you for sharing it with us!.

57  Thank tama100ra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed March 31, 2013

Waste of money,really wouldn,t recommend.Thought we were going to learn about the jail itself,but didn,t.Reminded me of a junk shop.

1  Thank missykamoo2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Littledean Jail Museum also viewed

Coleford, Forest of Dean
Coleford, Forest of Dean
 

Been to Littledean Jail Museum? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing