Monday 23 June 2014

The Bay Museum at Canvey

Over the weekend I visited a small but very interesting military museum that I have known about for some time but never, until now, managed to visit. The Bay Museum is run entirely by volunteers and only opens on Sundays and Bank Holidays between 10am & 4pm (free admission) and whenever I have been in the area before it has been closed. They do do visits by appointment outside those hours but you'll need to phone and arrange this.

The building itself is very small, just two rooms and a narrow staircase between them, but each room is jam packed with artefact's from both the world wars. First World War items are displayed upstairs and downstairs is an excellent WWII collection. The volunteers I spoke to were both well informed and very enthusiastic about their collection. I took my youngest daughter in here while the wife went to a local market and we happily whiled away over an hour in the museum chatting to the staff and looking at the exhibits. I took a few pictures and here is a small taster of what you can find inside this collection.

A nice selection of WWI German Pickelhaube and other items. 

The selection of exhibits is eclectic and very interesting

A First World War Lewis Gun and other weapons on display

'Action Man' figures in WWI infantry uniforms

The WWII collection downstairs included several Naval items and some interesting medal groups

A nice collection of Desert Rats related memorabilia

Replica cap badges and medal ribbons as worn by Viscount Montgomery

More Naval items including this excellent model

More models this time of an early short barrelled Panzer IV and a Tiger Tank.
There is loads to see and I'll have to make another trip at some point to explore the collection more fully. If you are in the area on a Sunday or Bank Holiday this is well worth a quick visit. There are a load more pictures on the museum website and details of how they can be contacted if you have any queries or would like to arrange a special visit. 


  1. Always suitably jealous of all the shows and museums that you are able to visit and post on here. Nothing like that around here. Anyway, thanks for sharing all the great pics!

  2. Great looking place, love the helmets!

  3. Another interesting review. Thanks Lee.
    Although I second Jason. I'm rather jealous about the number of meseums you manage to visit. Here are too few of such places...


  4. Terrific museum find and great little collection, therein. Appreciate you sharing your travels.

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  6. I will add this to my list of places I need to go to when I am back in England. This looks to be a great find. What is the history on this museum. Is it connected to a regiment or is it a private museum.

    1. Its a private museum run by local volunteers. Not a huge collection but certainly enough to keep you busy for an hour or more (depending on how chatty you get with the staff!).

  7. Great collection. Thanks for sharing. Those WWI german helmets have so much detailed decoration on them. They seem so impractical.

    1. They were very conspicuous in their 'natural' state, especially if the brass eagle was polished! The middle of the three helmets pictured has a canvas cover over it, which is how they were worn in the field.


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