FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

The Museum reopens on 2 December.

Tickets are available to book online. We look forward to welcoming you back.

PLAN YOUR VISIT

VISITOR AND STAFF SAFETY

Expand All

 

  • VisitEngland Good To Go Kitemark Logo

    Limiting Numbers – The Ashmolean will be limiting the number of visitors who can come into the museum each day and asking our visitors to follow social distancing guidelines. Oxford is currently a Tier 2 area. In line with government guidance you can book up to 6 tickets to visit with members of your household or support bubble. If your household or support bubble is larger than 6, please contact our Box Office to book your tickets.
     

  • One-Way Systems – To help manage social distancing, some areas of the museum will use one way systems and we ask visitors to follow any signage or advice from our Visitor Experience team members.
     
  • Face Coverings – Everyone must now wear a face covering, by law, in museums and galleries in England Exemptions are listed in response to the next FAQ question, below.
     
  • Enhanced Cleaning – Hand sanitiser will be available for your use throughout the museum and we have an enhanced cleaning regime throughout the building.
     
  • If you suspect you have symptoms of coronavirus, we ask that you delay your visit and follow government guidance.
     
  • We are asking visitor’s permission to provide information that can be shared with the NHS Test and Trace system if necessary.
Staying Safe – Changes at the Ashmolean

 

 
Yes, everyone must now wear a face covering, by law, in museums and galleries in England.

We are asking visitors to wear a face covering during their visit.

There are several reasons in line with Access and Equality that would mean individuals cannot wear face coverings. Below is a list of face covering exemptions for the Museum:

  • Children under the age of 11
  • If you have a physical, neurological, mental or emotional condition that means you cannot put on, wear, or remove a face covering
  • If putting on, wearing, or removing a face covering would cause you severe distress
  • If you are travelling with, or providing assistance to, someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
  • If you need to eat, drink, or take medication you can remove your face covering
  • If you are asked to remove your face covering by a security officer or other member of staff
  • If you require First Aid assistance or need to signal for urgent assistance from staff

If you need a member of staff to remove their face covering to talk to you e.g. if you need to lip read, please ask. We will be happy to help.
 

 
As required, the Ashmolean is collecting information that will help support the government’s Test and Trace programme. All of this information, along with any information that we would usually collect during the booking process is collected and used in line with GDPR. Our Privacy Policy can be read at the following link: Ashmolean Ticket Privacy Policy
 

 
Yes, risks have been carefully assessed and are reviewed constantly.

We have made a few changes to the Museum to comply with the government’s guidance on managing the risk of COVID-19. We have carried out risk assessments for our employees and visitors, which we will review if any changes are made to the advice.
 

TOILETS & FACILITIES

Expand All

 
Yes, our toilets, accessible toilets, and changing facilities, will be open.

Our toilets are being regularly cleaned throughout the day and there will be a socially distanced queuing system in place.
 

 
No, at present our lockers and cloakrooms will not be available. If possible, we would recommend only bringing a small bag if necessary.

Visitors are asked to carry bags on their front, or hold them by their side when in the galleries for the protection of objects that are on open display.

Recyclable plastic bags will be available for small umbrellas. In line with our usual policy, large umbrellas are not allowed into the galleries. Limited storage for large umbrellas will be available near the doors but items are left at visitor’s own risk.
 

CATERING

Expand All

 
Yes, the Ashmolean’s indoor café is open every day 10am–4.30pm for those with a ticket to visit the Museum.

There will be seating and tables, in reduced numbers to enable social distancing and to maintain safety measures in line with government guidelines.

We’ve gone cashless so payments will only be accepted by card.

HOW TO VISIT THE CAFE

A Museum ticket is required to visit our indoor café.

If you have a ticket for the Museum or the Pre-Raphaelites exhibition (opening February 2021) you will be able to visit the indoor café during your visit, but not before your ticket entry time slot. If you are visiting the exhibition you will be asked to enter the exhibition before the rest of the Museum, the café, and the shop(s).

WHAT IS BEING SERVED?

Food and drink can also be taken away. Any food or drinks bought on the premises as part of the takeaway offer must be consumed outside the Museum so should be bought at the end of your visit.

There will be a selection of freshly prepared food and drink available including sandwiches, salads, cakes and a range of hot and cold drinks. Vegetarian and vegan options will be available.

 

 
Yes, our Rooftop Restaurant has reopened but pre-booking is now essential.

The Restaurant is open for Afternoon Tea on Thursdays–Sundays, with limited tables available from 12pm to 3.30pm. Pre-booking is essential and bookings include general admission to the Museum after your visit to the restaurant.

The Restaurant is closed in the mornings and evenings, and closed Monday–Wednesday.

Find out more and book a table at the following link:

CAFÉ & RESTAURANT

 

 
Yes, we are happy for you to use a suitable, empty and clean re-useable cup.
 

 
Yes, our catering staff will happily refill your water bottle or provide you with tap water. Please ask at the café counter.
 

  
Unfortunately we do not have indoor seating available for you to eat your own food and drinks.
 

 

  • We’ve installed new signage and floor stickers in the café, to remind everyone about social distancing.
  • We’ve put a ‘one way system’ in place where we can, and there are clearly marked ordering, payment and collection areas for those waiting to take their food away.
  • There is a hand sanitiser station at the entrance to our café.
  • All café take-away food will be prewrapped.
  • Enhanced cleaning schedules have been developed to ensure regular sanitisation of touch points.
  • Plexiglass barriers have been installed at service points between visitors and service staff.
  • We’ve gone cashless so payments will only be accepted by card.
  • Our café staff will be wearing PPE in line with government guidance.
  • All café staff have received COVID-19 training and have been provided with details of what they need to do if they are experiencing symptoms themselves or have come into contact with someone with COVID-19.

 

ACCESS

Expand All

 

Although the request is that all visitors wear a face covering we understand that for some people wearing a face covering is not possible. If you have additional needs that mean you can’t wear a face covering and/or you need to see the entire face of the person talking to you, please view our list of exemptions near the top of this page, or at this following link: face covering exemptions.

If you need a member of staff to remove their face covering to talk to you – for example, if you need to lip read – please ask. We will be happy to help.

 

 

Yes, our accessible toilets, and changing facilities, will be open.

 

 

Yes, a limited number of wheelchairs are available to borrow, and a cleaning regime will be in place to sanitise these after each use.

 

 

Yes, assistance dogs are still welcome in the museum.

 

 

Yes, limited seating will be available in the galleries but less than usual to allow us to maintain social distancing. Some cushioned seating has been temporarily removed as it is more difficult to clean regularly. There is a regular cleaning regime in place.

Yes, folding stools will be available but we may need to restrict where people can stop and sit to maintain visitors flow and social distancing. Visitors are asked to follow the advice of museum staff. A cleaning regime will be in place to sanitise these after each use.

 

 

Yes, lifts are available. Use is prioritised for people with mobility issues and we ask that people who do not need a lift please use the stairs when possible.

 

 

Yes, as always we welcome visitors with young children and buggies to come and enjoy the museum.

 

 

No, this programme has been suspended to maintain social distancing and safety for visitors and staff. Programmes will resume at some stage but we don’t yet have a date.

 

GROUP BOOKINGS

Expand All

 
At the moment we are not taking bookings, even provisional ones, for any group visits (including schools). We are keeping this policy under constant review and will amend as circumstances and government advice change around social distancing. We look forward to welcoming you back as soon as we can.
 

 
Please email the Learning Department at learning@ashmus.ox.ac.uk and you will be directed to the relevant person in the team.

Enquiries may take a little longer to reply to than usual.
 

SHOPPING

Expand All

 

Yes, our main shop on the Lower Ground Floor will be open.

Our Special Exhibition Shop, on Level 3, will be open when there is a special exhibition showing. Pre-Raphaelites: Drawings & Watercolours opens on 4 February 2021.

We will be limiting the number of visitors to the shop at any one time, to adhere to social distancing.

Government guidance is that face coverings must be worn in shops. Face coverings can be bought in both shops.

You may also like to shop online:

 SHOP ONLINE

 

 
We would ask that you pay by card whenever possible to reduce contact.
 

STUDY ROOMS, EVENTS & ACTIVITIES

Expand All

 

At present our Study Rooms and Print Rooms will not be open. We hope to reopen them as soon as it is safe to do so.

 

 

For the safety of our visitors, guided talks and tours won’t be running at present.

 

 

SPOTLIGHT TRAIL

If you do not know the Ashmolean well, our new Spotlight Trail guides you through the museum stopping off to discover 12 of our highlight objects along the way. The trail takes about an hour, longer if you pause to see lots of other objects along the way. Take your time, linger as long as you like. Pick up a copy at the Museum, or download a PDF on our Plan Your Visit page: Plan Your Visit

FAMILY TRAILS

Some paper Family Trails will be available but we may need to restrict their use on occasion to maintain social distancing. Visitors are asked to follow the advice of museum staff. You can download trails to print at home at the following link: Family Trails

AUDIO GUIDES

Our audio guides are not currently available to hire.

 

MUSEUM & EXHIBITION TICKETS

Expand All

 

All visitors, Members and Patrons will need to book a timed ticket, to help us manage the Museum's reduced capacity due to required social distancing. 

You can book tickets on the day of your visit, online via our website, if tickets are still available for that day. On the day tickets may also be available at the museum but we recommend advance booking to avoid disappointment.

By managing the number of visitors in the Museum, we can ensure a safe and enjoyable visit for everyone. Booking fees have been waived at this present time if you book your ticket online.

Timed entry slots will help us to manage the flow of visitors through the doors and to minimise the need for queuing. Entry slots will be every 15 minutes, and will be available from 10am until 4pm (1 hour before the Museum closes at 5pm). To avoid disappointment, please arrive within your time slot.

 

 

Please visit our Plan Your Visit page to find our booking links, or, if you are not able to book online, please telephone the box office on 01865 278112. Please be aware we have limited resource to answer calls, so online booking is recommended.

Booking fees have been waived at this present time if you book your ticket online, which is recommended. Telephone bookings may incur a booking fee to help support the Museum and cover the costs of staffing our Box Office.

 

 

There will be two ticket options available:

  • FREE Museum General Admission tickets – These free tickets permit entry to the museum collections, free temporary displays, café and shop only.
  • Special Exhibition + Museum General Admission tickets – These tickets permit entry to the museum as well as to our Special exhibition. Our next special exhibition Pre-Raphaelites: Drawing & Watercolours opens 4 February 2021.

 

 

Yes, we kindly request that Members and Patrons also book a timed ticket in advance to ensure that we can adhere to social distancing and safety measures for all of our visitors.

here are two ticket options available (listed in response to the question above this one) and both are free for Members, with no booking fee. To obtain free exhibition tickets, Members will need to enter their 13- or 14-digit membership number.

Expired memberships do not provide free access to our special exhibitions, but we would be delighted if you wished to renew your membership. If your membership is coming up for renewal, we will contact you in advance with instructions on how to renew and book your exhibition/museum slot. More information about membership can be found on our membership FAQ page: Your Membership

 

 

If you are visiting the main Museum galleries only, we would recommend at least 90 minutes for your visit.

If you are visiting the Pre-Raphaelites exhibition (opening February 2021) then we would recommend at least 1 hour to see the exhibition. If you have booked a ticket for an exhibition you can also visit the rest of the Museum afterwards. Please be aware that the Ashmolean closes at 5pm and this should be taken into consideration if you wish to see more of the Museum after your exhibition visit.

 

 

We always do our best to open as much of the museum as we can. Due to new operational requirements, resulting from COVID-19, we may have to close some areas of the museum at short notice.

Our programme of temporary exhibitions has also changed slightly. To find out which exhibitions and free displays will be open when you visit, please visit this link: Exhibitions and Displays

The Western Art Print room and Study rooms are currently closed.

 

 

No, you will be able to stay in the Museum for as long as you wish, until the Museum closes at 5pm.

 

 

Please arrive at the Museum to enter within the time slot on your ticket. To help manage the museum’s reduced capacity we cannot guarantee early entry.

If you are visiting the special exhibition you will be asked to enter the exhibition within your entry time slot, before visiting the rest of the Museum, the café, and the shop(s).

We will do our best to allow entry if you miss your booked time slot, but unfortunately this cannot always be guaranteed.

 

 

FREE TICKETS: Museum entry tickets are free, so if you are unable to make your time slot, we would be grateful if you could let us know as soon as possible so that we can make the slot available for others. Please contact onlinetickets@ashmus.ox.ac.uk with your name, date and time of your booking. Alternatively you can call the box office on 01865 278112

PAID-FOR TICKETS: We do not offer refunds on paid-for tickets, as per our Terms & Conditions. We can change the date and/or time of your paid-for tickets but this may be subject to a booking fee and is subject to availability Please email or call the box office if you would like to change your booking, on onlinetickets@ashmus.ox.ac.uk or 01865 278112.

 

 

Visitors booking online will receive an e-ticket via confirmation email. We would recommend downloading the PDF ticket before you visit, to show on your phone or device for us to scan, or printing it.

 

 

No, you will receive your tickets attached to a confirmation email shortly after completing your online booking. Please print your tickets and present them at the exhibition entrance, or show them on a mobile phone. Entry cannot be guaranteed if tickets are not presented.

 

 

Please check your spam/junk folders. If you still cannot find your booking email, please email us before your visit so we can help resolve the issue. Our ticketing email address is: onlinetickets@ashmus.ox.ac.uk

 

 

As a thank you, we would like to offer a 50% discount on our Pre-Raphaelites exhibition tickets to holders of Blue Light cards. Please remember to bring your card with you, to show on entry, with your e-ticket.

 

 

In accordance with government guidance, we cannot at the moment accommodate groups. The maximum number of tickets which can be booked online is 6.

Oxford is currently a Tier 2 area. In line with government guidance you can only visit with members of your household or support bubble.

If your household or support bubble is larger than 6, please contact our Box Office to book your tickets.

 

 

Yes, please book a combined Special Exhibition + General Museum Admission ticket. All exhibition tickets permit entry to the Museum galleries after your exhibition visit. You will be asked to visit the exhibition at the entry time you booked for, and to visit the Museum galleries, café and shop(s) after your exhibition visit. Please be aware, if booking an afternoon ticket, that the Ashmolean closes at 5pm.

 

 

Please contact the Box Office by phone on 01865 278 112.

 

 

Yes, we ask that all visitors book in advance for their visit so we can manage the capacities under social distancing rules and adhere to safety measures.

 

 

Sadly no. Reciprocal agreements between museums are currently suspended.

 

 

Yes, we ask that all visitors pre-book for their visit so we can manage the capacities under social distancing rules. Your carer is entitled to free entry to the exhibition.

Disabled visitors should book a regular exhibition ticket at full or concession price, depending on eligibility. Accompanying carers also need a ticket but these are free. Carers can access the exhibition for free with a ticket-holding disabled visitor.

 

 

Concession exhibition tickets are available for University of Oxford staff and alumni, and those over 65s.

Discounted exhibition tickets are available for all non-Oxford University students, children aged 12–17, persons under 25, those who are unemployed, Blue Light Card Holders, and Art Fund Members. Proof of eligibility must be presented with your ticket when you visit.

 

 

Ashmolean Membership only covers exhibition entry for yourself and any other named members if you hold a joint membership. You may bring guests with you into the exhibitions if you hold an 'Individual + Guest' or 'Joint + Guests' membership. If you hold an 'Individual' or 'Joint' membership then you will need to purchase a ticket for any guests who are not named members.

All visitors must have a pre-booked ticket to be granted exhibition entry.

 

Yes, should the UK government instruct us to close the Museum again, your paid-for exhibition ticket will be refunded.