Ironbridge Gorge in Shropshire is a UNESCO World Heritage site. At this birthplace of industry there are 10 museums and of course it would be impossible to visit all in one day. We purchased an Annual Passport Ticket last year, which entitles you to return as often as you like for 12 months.
With the weather being unpredictable in winter we decided to visit two attractions, which are mainly indoors. The chief advantage in going off-season is the ability to wander around in comparative peace, but the as the circular bus is not in service during the winter we took the car. You have to pay and display in the car park but the ticket covers you for any of the sites that day. We didn’t use the lifts and disabled access points but most of the exhibits seemed to be accessible.
Coalport China Museum had superb collections of Coalport and Caughley china. It tells the story of life in the factory and the dreadful working conditions suffered by the workers who produced such exquisite wares. We also viewed demonstrations of traditional techniques although some of the workshops are only open during the week in the off-season.
The Jackfield Tile Museum was fascinating. Not only were there magnificent displays of tiles but also walk through areas like a tube station, a pub and a children’s hospital ward. There is a new exhibition the John Scott Gallery featuring an extensive collection of some of the most famous British design names. There is definitely more to see than we had first expected – so we were glad to sit down for a nice cup of tea and a cake in the cafe!