Welcome to Axminster

Gateway to the Jurassic Coast

Axminster Heritage Centre

The Axminster Heritage Centre….

More Than Just a Museum…

You’ll be welcomed by our friendly volunteers who will be pleased to help you. Get tourist and local information, browse our gift shop and step inside our new extended museum. Take a trip through time to learn what has made Axminster and the surrounding area what it is today. Children can enjoy their own trail with dressing up points and interactive activities.

Explore Axminster, its origins in the Bronze and Stone Ages, then as a crossroads on the Roman Fosse Way.

Learn about the abbey built at Newenham. by the Cistercian monks after they were given the Manor of Axminster in  1246.

Discover how Axminster became a busy agricultural market town developing a strong rural economy over many years.

World Famous Axminster Carpets Thomas Whitty started making carpets here in 1755, whilst William Harry Dutfield established his modern factory in 1937.

See a beautiful 1769 Whitty carpet. Compare our original 18th century loom used by Whitty with a 1930s Crabtree loom used in the Axminster Carpets factory. We occasionally run the Crabtree loom which is fully working (Check our website for dates and times)

The town has attracted all sorts of craftsmen and women, a foundry, two brush factories, both famous for their toothbrushes. A series of precision engineering companies have flourished and examples of some of their innovative products are on display.

Learn how individuals like Thomas Whitty and William Buckland put Axminster on the map. Others like James Davidson and George Pulman recorded Axminster’s history, and Emily Conybeare helped the sick of the town.

All this is housed in a factory built by the Whitty family, which subsequently served the town as a court-house and a hospital.

Information for Tourists and Local Residents…

The Information Centre is located in the reception area of the Heritage Centre. Find places to visit, local event information and tickets, walks, cycle routes and bus timetables.

Axminster Heritage Alive…

Join in our extensive programme of friendly events, including talks, art and craft courses, films and coach trips. Check ‘What’s On’ at our website for information.

The Bradshaw Meeting Room…

A comfortable venue with a kitchenette, digital projector and Wi-Fi is available to hire for meetings, classes, and community gatherings. Check ‘Venue Hire’ at our website for details.

Axminster Heritage Centre, Thomas Whitty House, Silver Street, Axminster, EX13 5AH 

Telephone: 01297 639884.  



Our Team will be glad to help you anytime with
general questions, suggestions or comments

01297 33375 | Email us