The Grosvenor Museum tells the story of Chester from pre-history to the present day. The museum has particularly strong collections of material relating to Roman life in Chester, including an internationally important collection of Roman tombstones which were found in the 19th century having been reused in the city walls.
The museum also contains an art gallery with very fine painting and sculpture by regional artists with landscapes of Cheshire and North Wales. The gallery benefits from regular loans from the Duke of Westminster’s outstanding art collection. The Ridgway Silver Gallery showcases the best of a collection of hallmarked Chester silver, from race trophies to church plate. The museum’s period house features decorative styles and furniture from the Stuarts to the 1920s, highlighting changes in living conditions throughout the centuries.
The Grosvenor also has a natural history gallery focused on flora and fauna of the Cheshire area.
- The museum’s connection with the Dukes of Westminster dates back to its creation – the museum was named after Hugh Lupus Grosvenor, the first Duke of Westminster, who donated a portion of the site and part of the building costs.
- The museum contains the only known specimen of a dox in the world – a dog/fox hybrid.
- Fragments of hacksilver and ingots from the Castle Esplanade hoard are displayed at the museum. This is one of the most important late Saxon hoards found in Britain, and was found by workmen digging near Chester Castle in 1950.