The Friends of Carisbrooke Castle Museum is a small charity, which has worked for over 60 years to support the aims and activities of the Trustees of the Museum. Most of our 250 members live locally.



What do we do?

We hold regular talks, meeting in the Museum ten times a year. These are varied in content but generally reflect the members’ interests in local history, social and art history. Fifty people usually come along each month.

We run raffles, draws, book sales, attend fetes, put on occasional events such as special daytime lectures, wine tasting, coffee mornings and an annual draw. We also aim to promote the public awareness of the Museum.

How does this help the Museum?

We are a separate charity to the Museum, allowing us to raise funds for special projects in a variety of ways. In recent years our fundraising has become increasingly important to maintain the Museum.

What have we provided for the Museum?

  • computer equipment and software to update the Museum’s systems
  • funding for projects such as the collecting boxes and games in the Museum, raising vital revenue
  • items for the collection, including the Princess Elizabeth Stuart Papers, an 1863 Island child’s diary and funding towards a full set of prints of Isle of Wight scenes by Thomas Walmesley from the early 1800s
  • help when required with funds towards setting up new exhibitions

The Friends do not organise any work at the museum.  We do not help
directly in the museum but many Friends belong to the team of
volunteers, organised and supervised by the museum staff,  who help with
a variety of hands on tasks behind the scenes and front of house at the
museum, photographing items for the Historic Images website and many other tasks as required.

King Charles I portrait by Rita Greer

New King Charles I portrait by artist Rita Greer, presented to the Museum at a Friends event


There are a number of benefits in joining the Friends. Membership includes:

  • interesting talks at the Museum throughout the year
  • a pass to allow access to the Museum gives you access to the Castle without entry fee at all times when the Castle is open to the public
  • the option of using the Museum’s library, where we have an extensive collection of books relating to the Island and its history

How can I join the Friends?

There are three available options to join the Friends:

  • download the Membership form(PDF) – please print and return by post
  • come along to a meeting and join as you sign in – the regular meetings are normally on the third Wednesday of the month (except January and August)
  • download the Standing Order form (PDF) – a small number of Friends pay by Standing Order or Direct Credit

For further advice, please contact Lin Watterson (Friends Secretary):

Can I use Gift Aid?

The repayment of income tax via Gift Aid has provided a substantial increase to the funds that we can use for improvements the Museum. Please do sign up for Gift Aid if you are able to:

  • download the Gift Aid form (PDF) – please print and return by post


All events listed below take place in the Great Hall at the Museum (unless otherwise stated).

Meetings start at 7.30, gate opens at 7.15pm

If you would like to bring a friend, non-members are welcome to come as visitors and we ask them for a minimum donation of £3 per visit.

Programme of talks for 2019 – 2020

Dec 11th. Christmas Social
Please note the date : entertainment to be

January – NO MEETING

Feb 19th. – 2020 AGM then: Looking ahead to the next year in the museum.

March 18th – Keith Marston: Photographs of the Isle Of Wight through the seasons. CANCELLED


You can read the latest Friends’ newsletter here.