Skip to main content

War gallery

three excited children getting a better look at the Agincourt model

Trace the changing face of battle from the days of bloody hand-to-hand combat to today's technology based warfare in our largest gallery.

Explore the development of arms and armour from their earliest use to conflicts within living memory.


  • New gallery display Firefight: The Second World War. Through objects, imagery, and film, we explore the weapons, armour, ammunition types and methods of fighting developed by all sides to increase their chances of winning. Training and manufacturing are also explored – they would also prove key to the eventual Allied victory.
  • The Warwick shaffron - the oldest surviving European horse armour
  • The Gothic horse armour of Waldemar VI, Duke of Anhalt-Zerbst- the quintessential 'knight in shining armour'
  • The Danzig gun - a very early decorated handgun from about 1400
  • A longbow from the wreck of the Mary Rose - Henry VIII's flag ship
  • Writhen hilt sword - a rare knight's sword with a twisted decorative hilt and grip
  • English Civil Wars armour of Parliamentarian commander Colonel Alexander Popham