Royal Armouries Museums

There is always lots to see and do at the Royal Armouries.
Our museums are open every day and admission is free!

Opening times

10am to 5pm (last entry 4.30pm)

Latest opening information

There are 70 items tagged with ‘portsmouth

21 Pages

1. Fort Nelson Events

Come and discover for yourself the new galleries and displays, our new Cafe 1871 plus a brand new visitor centre. Admission will still be free of charge.

2. Venue Hire

Experience this fully restored Victorian Fort built to protect the great naval harbour of Portsmouth and set in 19 acres of Hampshire countryside. Feel the noise and power of the great guns and discover a truly atmospheric and unusual setting.

4. Fort Nelson Education

Information for those planning a education group visit to the Royal Armouries at Fort Nelson.

5. What's On

Come and discover for yourself the new galleries and displays, our new Cafe 1871 plus a brand new visitor centre. Admission will still be free of charge.

6. Florence Nightingale

Our Florence Nightingale workshop is divided into three sessions; pupils will answer three key historical questions. There are strong peer/teacher discussion and investigative elements to these mini sessions.

7. Key Stage 2

Our range of workshops for schools have all been developed with the needs of the school curriculum in mind.

8. Key Stage 3

Our range of workshops for schools have all been developed with the needs of the school curriculum in mind.

9. About us

The Royal Armouries is the national museum of arms and armour for the United Kingdom. It is the oldest museum in the country and home to one of the great collections of arms and armour in the world.

10. Furry Friends

‘Furry friends’ is a Treasure Box that contains all you need for a do it yourself treasure hunt and storytelling activity in our galleries.

11. Mrs Bobbin's Kitchen

Help your child to engage in sensory play (sight, touch, smell) and to respond to their surroundings in a Victorian kitchen.

12. Scales and Tales

Scales and Tales is a Treasure Box designed for use in our Art of Artillery gallery and is recommended for children aged between 0–2 years of age.

13. Hog Tales

Pupils will learn about the construction of Fort Nelson through the medium of the classic tale ‘The Three Little Pigs’

14. Arms and Armour Through Time

Pupils learn about chronology of time periods and of ideas through the history of arms and armour. They will be able to handle arms and armour from the Neolithic to the Norman invasion and beyond.

15. Roman Army

Students will learn how and why the Roman army was so successful at invading and empire building. They will handle and compare Roman and Celtic replica arms and armour, to establish how each kit was used.

16. Second World War - Local History Study

Pupils will assume the role of a German spy to investigate the buildings of Fort Nelson and establish what activities were carried out at the Fort during the Second World War.

17. Simple Siege Machines

upils will get hands-on experience of forces in action by building and testing a mini Roman siege machine or catapult. They will test their catapult using different types of projectiles, from boiled sweets to rubber ducks!

18. First World War

This study day begins with two handling sessions that introduce pupils to the British and German soldiers’ experiences of the war. They have the opportunity to handle both the British German kit plus some of the weapons that both sides had to face.

19. Palmerston's Follies

Pupils will explore how the effects of the industrial revolution and fears about French invasion enabled the 19th Century British Prime Minister Lord Palmerston, to persuade the country to build a line of fortifications to protect Portsmouth Harbour.

20. Arms and Armour Through Time

Pupils will learn about the chronology of time periods and ideas through the history of arms and armour. They will be able to handle arms and armour from the Norman invasion to the Cold War.

21. Simple Siege Machines

Pupils will get hands-on experience of forces in action by building and testing a mini Roman siege machine or catapult. They will test their catapult using different types of projectiles, from boiled sweets to rubber ducks.

42 Events

1. Remembrance Day Salute

First World War gunfiring and poignant presentations for Remembrance Sunday.

2. Thunder of the Guns

Victorian uniformed gunners of the Portsdown Artillery Volunteers will fire the mighty 110 pounder gun at Fort Nelson at 12 noon and 2 pm.

3. Thunder of the Guns

Victorian uniformed gunners of the Portsdown Artillery Volunteers will fire the mighty 110 pounder gun at Fort Nelson at 12 noon and 2 pm.

4. INVADERS!

Come and meet the invaders who have tried to conquer our country through the ages.

5. D-DAY SALUTE

Commemorating the 66th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

6. VJ DAY SALUTE

Commemorating the 65th anniversary of VJ Day.

7. HERITAGE OPEN DAYS

Special weekend activities

8. TRAFALGAR DAY GUN SALUTES

Commemorating the Battle of Trafalgar.

9. TRAFALGAR DAY GUN SALUTES

Commemorating the Battle of Trafalgar.

10. TRAFALGAR DAY GUN SALUTES

Commemorating the Battle of Trafalgar.

11. DR TERROR AND THE VAMPIRE'S TOMB

Due to popular demand Dr Terror is back!

12. ARMISTICE DAY SALUTE

Armistice Day commemorations.

13. REMEMBRANCE DAY SALUTE

Remembrance Day commemorations.

14. REMEMBRANCE DAY SALUTE

Remembrance Day commemorations.

15. FORT FUN DAYS

Fun-packed activity days.

16. FORT FUN DAYS

Fun-packed activity days.

17. GLADIATOR SKOOL

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

18. ANIMALS IN WAR

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

19. KNIGHT SKOOL

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

20. PIRATES AHOY!

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

21. LEGENDS OF ROBIN HOOD

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

22. HUNTING HAWKS AND CREEPY CRAWLIES

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

23. ANIMALS IN WAR

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

24. LEGENDS OF ROBIN HOOD

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

25. BATTLE OF BRITAIN

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

26. LEECHES AND BONESAWS

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

27. QUEEN VICTORIA'S FLEAS

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

28. PIRATES AHOY

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

29. GLADIATOR SKOOL

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

30. RAIDERS OF THE LOST FORT

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

31. TALES FROM THE TOWER

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

32. HUNTING HAWKS AND CREEPY CRAWLIES

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

33. LEGENDS OF ROBIN HOOD

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

34. BATTLE OF BRITAIN

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

35. FESTIVE FUN AT THE FORT

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

36. OFF WITH THEIR HEADS

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

37. COMMANDO KIDS

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

38. ROUNDHEADS & CAVALIERS

Fort Fun Day for children 5+. No need to book – just drop in!

39. Victorian 64-pounder Gun Firing

Portsdown Artillery Society will be firing the Victorian 64-pounder gun on the ramparts of Fort Nelson. There will be 3 firing times and each firing will be preceded by a talk by the Keeper of Artillery.

40. Victorian 64-pounder Gun Firing

Portsdown Artillery Society will be firing the Victorian 64-pounder gun on the ramparts of Fort Nelson. There will be 3 firing times and each firing will be preceded by a talk by the Keeper of Artillery.

41. Victorian 64-pounder Gun Firing

Portsdown Artillery Society will be firing the Victorian 64-pounder gun on the ramparts of Fort Nelson. There will be 3 firing times and each firing will be preceded by a talk by the Keeper of Artillery.

42. SMOKE AND THUNDER

As part of Culture 24’s Museums at Night 2013 the Royal Armouries at Fort Nelson is offering an exclusive evening gun firing event.


7 Press Releases

1. Free day out for all the family... new-look Fort Nelson is unveiled

The Royal Armouries unveils its state-of-the-art new museum at Fort Nelson on Saturday (August 6) – home to the big guns.

2. Intrepid youngsters launch an armoured assault on Fort Nelson

Youngsters are being invited to beat the February half-term blues and let off steam by joining an “Armoured Assault” session at historic Fort Nelson.

3. Business as usual – Christmas still celebrated at Fort Nelson!

At Fort Nelson there’s a fun-packed programme to keep the kids occupied in both the run up to Christmas and during the traditional lull between the Big Day and the New Year.

4. Video footage of the Big Bang to launch Fort Nelson £3.5m Development

Cannon fire and spectacular pyrotechnic effects ensured the long-awaited redevelopment project went off with a “bang” as demolition works starts at the Victorian fort, high on Portsdown Hill, near Fareham.

5. “Big Bang” to launch the £3.5m redevelopment of Fort Nelson

The Trustees and Master of the Royal Armouries (RA) are inviting the public to experience the “explosive launch” of the £3.5 million project to revamp Fort Nelson.

6. Heritage Lottery Fund gives £2 million to redevelop Fort Nelson

Heritage Lottery Fund gives £2 million to redevelop Fort Nelson
Once Portsmouth’s protective barrier to French invasion in Victorian times and air attack during World War Two, Fort Nelson is now home to the national collection of historic artillery.

7. PACKING A POWERFUL PUNCH

Fort Nelson will ring to the sound of a mighty 13-inch Land Service Mortar on Sunday (September 29) in the latest of Royal Armouries’ spectacular free gun firings.