School college and group visits
Telling the story of military communications from flags to cyber
An Accredited Museum
Visits are tailored to meet group needs. Education and research programmes include an array of hands-on exhibits and activity sheets.
Subjects supported include history, English, technology, science, art, maths. College course support includes: citizenship, military preparation, uniformed public services, public communications.
Schools, colleges, cadets, youth groups
Situated inside a working military base
The Royal Signals Museum provides a unique opportunity for pupils to study away from the school classroom in a lively, educational and interactive setting.
We are located on Blandford Camp, in Dorset at the heart of a working Military Base – an experience in itself. All visits are set within the Museum.
What to expect
Visits provide young people with an insight into a unique environment – providing a real, inspirational context for their studies. We offer a rich, interactive focus for many aspects of the curriculum including history, English, technology, science, art, communications and maths.
Our Education and Research Programmes include an array of hands-on exhibits with accompanying activity sheets. We work with you to ensure that we design and provide the resources and expertise that best meet your needs and provide a stimulating interpretation of your formal curriculum.
A Museum member of staff will be assigned to each group. Pupils are taught in groups of no more than fifteen with teachers asked to divide the class accordingly. You will be expected to stay with the group and adhere to staffing ratios laid down by your own institution.
Within the class sessions small group activities provide opportunities for children of mixed ability to work together, or for teachers and our staff to give attention to students with additional needs, including the gifted and those who may struggle with elements of the curriculum or have a disability.
What is the time-table for a typical visit?
This should be discussed before your visit. We recommend a minimum of 2 hours per visit to a maximum of 3+ hours. This is exclusive of any time needed for lunch.
We can be flexible to meet the time you have available and can adapt sessions to meet class needs.
Time can be built in to have a break between Activity Sheet and Handling Sessions, or the coach tour of camp can be omitted if teachers are pressed for time.
We can answer any queries that you may have about a potential visit and can provide you with copies of the Activity Sheets and instructions for the Handling Sessions prior to any visit.
We have a number of Museum leaflets and brochures so that you can learn more about the Museum – these can be provided prior to any visit should you wish. Please do browse this website too. We constantly add and improve the content we carry.
We can also arrange for members of your staff to visit the Museum in preparation for a visit.
The light curriculum
We use the Shutter Telegraph System, signalling by lamp, periscopes and the heliograph, as our equipment bases for teaching the basics of the light curriculum.
The Activity Sheets require pupils to examine equipment in the Museum and draw deductions about how it works and how they were used. The Handling Sessions are practical sessions dealing with mirrors, lens and light rays with the purpose of defining how the above military equipment was designed. This involves a wide range of skills and learning naturally extends beyond the science curriculum.
Monday – Friday 10am – 4.30pm
Saturday & Sunday (March – October) 10am – 4pm. Closed weekends from End of October until February half-term.
Please note that we only normally accept school groups during the working week – Monday to Friday.
For the disabled
There is an access ramp for the disabled at the front entrance to the Museum and a lift between lower and upper levels.There are toilets, and toilets for the disabled. If you have pupils with other or additional needs/disabilities please get in touch to discuss your requirements.
Cafe, food and drink
Bags and storage
A secure space is provided for pupils and teachers to leave bags and coats etc.
Groups must be accompanied by the requisite number of staff as per age-range guidelines. However a member of the Museum Staff will accompany you throughout your visit.
We currently provide visits for colleges who run courses in Citizenship, Military Preparation, Uniformed Public Services, Public Communications.
We work with you to provide a valuable experience for students. Our educational offer for Colleges can include a Military perspective provided by serving soldiers (by appointment).
Sample college programme
- Museum Tour – Setting the Scene, A History of Military Signalling and the Royal Corps of Signals
- Military Presentation – The role of the modern Corps
- Bowman presentation – Information and Comms systems in use by the army today.
- Bowman Radio Orienteering Exercise – Subject to availability, weather and length of visit .
Programmes can be designed and adapted to suit your needs. Please contact email@example.com
Sample timetable – schools
On arrival: Welcome and briefing in the resources too (Approx 15 mins)
Activity sheets: One group to go round the Museum with a member of the Museum staff completing their pre-agreed Activity Sheets. The member of staff will explain the relevant aspects of the exhibits in the context of their learning. (Approx 45 mins to 1 hour).
Break for change-over. (Approx 10 mins).
Handling Session: Complete a set programme of hands-on activities, using circuit boards; buzzers, lamps, telephone exchanges, relevant military equipment, mirrors and other practical aids, (depending on the topic/s). The relevance of this session is put into context by the Activity Sheet session in the Museum. (Approx 45 mins to 1 hour).
Extra time: Free time or guided tour of the Museum to meet your needs. There are a lot of interactive resources, outside the formal programme, for children to explore. (20 mins to 1 hour).
Time to visit the Museum Shop (approx 10 mins).
Departure: A guided coach-tour of the camp shows the children the working life of an active Military Camp. Please note coaches are not provided by the museum.
These relate to sites with subjects connected with the Royal Signals museum in some way. We are not responsible for their content.
- The Official site of the Special Operations Executive
- The Official site of the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry (FANY) – Details on the history of The Women’s Transport Service (FANY).
- The Royal Signals Amateur Radio Society (RSARS)
- Army Museums Ogilby Trusts www.armymuseums.org.uk
- Dorset Museums Association www.dorsetmuseums.co.uk
- Museum of History of Science www.mhs.ox.ac.uk
- Bletchley Park www.bletchleypark.org.uk
- The Telegraph Museum, Porthcurno www.telegraphmuseum.org
- The Science Museum www.sciencemuseum.org.uk
- The Marconi Heritage Group www.marconiheritage.org
- The Purbeck Radar Museum www.purbeckradar.org.uk
- Fovant Badge Society fovantbadges.com