The Windsor and Royal Borough Museum and relocated Royal Windsor Visitor Information Centre has been officially reopened by His Royal Highness The Earl of Wessex.
The Earl cut a ribbon this evening (Tuesday 22 March) to officially declare the facilities at Windsor Guildhall open. His Royal Highness was then given a guided tour of the building and introduced to staff and had the opportunity to view some of the artefacts on display.
The Earl also unveiled a plaque at the Corn Exchange commemorating Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee this year and the centenary of King George V confirming Windsor as a Royal Borough.
The museum reopened last month after a break of nearly two years. The council brought together these complementary facilities within a fitting destination location, meaning people can explore the fascinating exhibits and get expert visitor information all under one historic roof – with admission free to all.
The museum has been in the Guildhall for more than 10 years and previously there had been an entry fee. The Information Centre was formerly located separately, a short distance away in the Old Ticket Office at Windsor Royal Station. Work to create the new Visitor Information desk and reconfigure the internal space was undertaken while the museum was closed to the public during Covid.
The Mayor, Councillor John Story, said: “It was an honour to welcome The Earl of Wessex to unveil the plaque and perform the official reopening. The plaque marks two very special milestones in both the Royal Family’s and Windsor’s rich history, as well as the close association between the two.
“Her Majesty also has a long association with Windsor Guildhall itself. The Queen first came here in an official capacity in 1951 when, as Princess Elizabeth, she re-opened the building after a major renovation. More recently she attended as part of her 90th birthday celebrations when she joined 20 other 90-year-old local residents in cutting a birthday cake.
“This long-running connection is something which we, as the Royal Borough, and our residents are enormously proud of and we look forward to celebrating further this year as we continue to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee with events and activities.”
Councillor Samantha Rayner, deputy leader of the council and cabinet member for business, corporate & residents services, culture & heritage, & Windsor, said: “This exciting project, bringing together two complementary facilities in the historical heart of Windsor town centre, has created the perfect partnership in the museum and information centre, for the benefit of all our visitors. Having His Royal Highness declare it officially open is the perfect way to celebrate this success story.
“The Royal Borough has a fabulously rich cultural heritage to uncover, and the museum is great for visitors and residents of all ages who want to discover and learn more about our unique borough. I’d encourage everyone to visit the fascinating exhibits, especially as entry is now free to all.
“Our friendly and knowledgeable staff can help with a wide range of services for visitors and local residents alike, from booking attractions, event tickets and places to stay, through to travel information and generally promoting our local tourism and hospitality businesses. I’d also like to express the council’s thanks and gratitude to the volunteers who help at the museum.”
The venue has seen an increase in visitors since reopening and numbers to the Guildhall are now above pre-pandemic levels.