Reviewed by Emma Booth
Me and my children have just got back from a lovely day at The Mary Rose Museum, situated at the historic dockyard in Portsmouth.
After hearing about the various half term activities going on this week, we headed straight for the LEGO activity which is to help build a giant LEGO brick portrait of Henry VIII. For this activity you’re given a LEGO brick square 8cm x8cm, one of the ladies described it as like colouring by numbers but with LEGO, and I would say that’s the best way to describe it. There were lots of different colours of LEGO squares laid out on the table and you had to match the colour to the one on the guide. Once you’ve completed your square you can add it to the picture yourself. The picture is amazing and not at all like I was expecting, I would love to see it once it’s finished. The people involved with this LEGO build are a company called Bright Bricks who have done some incredible builds like a life size horse. You also get a certificate of participation and a location map of your square. My daughter (7) thoroughly enjoyed doing this and loved the fact she could add her square to the main picture herself, she even asked if we could go back and do another but there’s another LEGO build happening in July so we will be back to participate in the next one. One thing that I did think was a brilliant idea was that if you don’t want to visit the museum you can just pay to take part in the LEGO activity by going around to a side door (£3 per square or 2 for £5).
There was also some Tudor cooking demonstrations going on talking about life cooking on the ship which was very interesting and informative and seemed to keep the children engaged by making the talk fun and offered them the chance to ask any questions they had.
On the top deck in the museum there was some clothes for the kids to try on and also a table to do some rubbings with many interactive items and boards to keep them occupied and interested throughout the museum. My daughter enjoyed looking at all the items on barber-surgeon’s table and the lady was only to pleased to explain the use for each item.
The museum is a delight to walk around with so many items on show that have survived for so long. There are 3 levels to explore all giving a different angle and view of the Mary Rose. We had a lovely time exploring the many different activities going on this half term and would definitely recommend this to any family looking for somewhere to take the kids, I think it has so much to offer.
We used the Portsmouth Park and Ride which dropped us of only a minute walk away and was only £4 for all day parking. All the staff were so helpful and friendly making us feel very welcome.
To buy tickets, the Mary Rose Museum now has its own visitor centre just opposite where you would buy tickets for the other attractions on site and has only been open a short while.
The Mary Rose museum is well worth a visit!
Annual tickets cost £8 (child) / £16 (adult) – save 10% by booking online.
For more information or to book tickets online visit maryrose.org.
The Mary Rose, Main Road, Portsmouth, PO1 3PY