• Fully physically accessible
  • Coach drop off
  • Toilets
  • Lunch facilities

The Whitaker Museum & Art Gallery

The Whitaker is a forward-facing museum and art gallery that aims to foster inclusive, vibrant communities that thrive within our natural environment.

At The Whitaker we work to strengthen people’s right and entitlements in terms of cultural access, education and participation in the life of the community. We draw on history and heritage, to help imagine design and begin to create the Valley we want for people and nature.

The history of the building goes back nearly 200 years when the house was owned by a local mill owner and called Oak Hill, Oak Hill was purchased by Richard Whitaker, another Rawtenstall industrialist, in 1900. he donated the building to the people of Rawtenstall as a museum.

Learning Sessions

Work with an Artist

Get creative with a local artist.

As part of our Artsmark offer we work with local artists Alan Birch and Jill Randall to bring you workshops exploring a range of techniques such as printmaking, engraving, wire sculpture and observational drawing. You will be inspired by our art and museum exhibitions or the natural environment to create work to take back to school.

Workshop options:
Workshops can take place at The Whitaker or in your classroom.

Artist session only
2 hour session for up to 15 pupils – £250
Full day (2 sessions, up to 15 pupils per session) – £375
Exploring Art & History
Full day at The Whitaker – including working with the artist, exploring the museum and local history – £400.

A Houseful of Stories

Local history, significant people and curious objects!

Ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes at a museum? Do you want to test your knowledge of your local area and maybe find out some fascinating facts along the way? Need inspiration for that story or poem you want to write or that play you want to produce? Then get yourself to The Whitaker!

This workshop can be booked for a morning or afternoon session.

£75 for 2 hours

Theatre in your School

A day of puppetry, storytelling and friendship

The Whitaker have teamed up with Goofus Theatre to bring you Lily & The Heron, a fantastical folk tale full of bravery, heart, magic and friendship. A story told through the art of puppetry, possible the oldest from of theatre performance.

Cost: £650
Duration: Full Day
Available to book from April onwards 2022

Professor Jigget's Fantastical Field Guide

Follow this magical trail around the park

Follow our free self-guided trail around the park under the guidance of magical explorer Professor Jigget. Learn about the trees and nature as you follow the map around Whitaker park but also look out for the Faerie Folk of Rossendale Valley! The Fay, the Fair Folk, The Hidden People who call it home.

This wonderous adventure can be accessed online where you can follow the map, listen to the audio recordings of Professor Jigget as you walk the trail. Full transcripts of each stop, and the map, are also available to download and print. You can also collect paper maps for your pupils at the start of your walk. Suggested donation of 50p per map.

Please be aware the park will be muddy in wetter weather!

To accompany the trail we have a PDF resource pack available full of activities from the Professor.

Cost: The trail is free but if you would like to invite the Professor along we can arrange it. £90 for up to 30 pupils
Duration: 90 minutes
Sessions available to book from April – September 2022.

Additional Activities

Digital and Online Resources

Find free activities for your classroom and museum. Creative videos, PDF resources and more. Learn how to knit, print, write for wellness and make an elephant!

Full details visit The Whitaker website here

3D Tour of The Whitaker

Fancy a look round before you visit? Check out our 3D tour of the whole of The Whitaker.