Discovering Narnia At Dorchester Abbey

picture of Mr Tumnus at Dorchester Abbey

Dorchester Abbey is currently hosting its very own Narnia exhibition and it’s quite simply lovely!  I absolutely adore the story of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S.Lewis so when I heard about the exhibition I just knew we had to visit.

When you enter the Abbey you will be greeted by a volunteer and given a guide book.  Each child is given an Identity Card.  They use this to log the letters they find hidden in each scene to make a secret message.

Start your journey where the story begins by packing your suitcase as an evacuee. 

candle and book on evacuee bedside table

Then put on a fur coat and head through the wardrobe door!

walking through the coats into Narnia

A winter wonderland awaits with an ice sleigh and the White Witch.  The iconic lamp post is there to guide you.

2 boys sat in the White Witch's sleigh in their wool coats

Next have tea with Mr Tumnus in his front room with a roaring fire.

picture of Mr Tumnus at Dorchester Abbey

Look for the robins and mice throughout the scenes along the way.  Count how many and see if you can find them all.

knitted dark grey mouse sat on stone mantle

Visit Mr and Mrs Beaver’s home and enjoy some role play.  The boys enjoying pretending to sew with the sewing machine.

boys using old metal sewing machine

Take a seat on the White Witch’s ice throne.

sat with a white cloack wrapped round and a crown on the ice throne

Then dress up as a King or Queen of Cair Paravel.  The boys also enjoyed dressing up as knights and having a sword fight!

boys sword fighting with toy swords and shields

Last of all visit Aslan in the forest.

We really loved how interactive this exhibition is.  Children are encouraged to dress up and role play the various characters.  There are boards by each scene with a snippet from the story for those who are not familiar with it.  The Abbey itself is also beautiful to explore.

Altar at Dorchester Abbey

If you visit on Saturdays or during February half term there are craft workshops to take part in (extra £2 per person).  Make an Aslan lion mask, a shield, crown and more.  There are a minimum of 3 crafts available at each workshop.  These are proving to be popular so I would recommend booking them in advance online here: https://www.dorchester-abbey.org.uk/narnia-2/

You can book your entry tickets in advance online or just pay on the door.  It’s very reasonable at £2 per individual or £5 for a family.   The exhibition is open on Saturday 10am-5pm and Sundays 1-5pm until 8th March 2020 and throughout half term (17th-21st February 10am-5pm).  Its completely wheelchair and pushchair friendly with ramps and a disabled toilet too.  Everyone is welcome. You can see more of the exhibition in our YouTube video. Enjoy!

Disclaimer:  Dorchester Abbey had no involvement in this review and we paid for our entry tickets.  Just wanted to share as we really enjoyed it!

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