Osborne

Schools

Osborne offers a real insight into the private lives of Queen Victoria and her family. Their Isle of Wight home can support learning in many aspects of the curriculum, across numerous subjects.

"Our pupils love visiting Osborne as there’s so much to see and do.  A trip to the house, the gardens, Swiss Cottage and the beach inspire them and enhance their learning."

Sam Sillito
Headteacher

Information about your visit

A visit to one of our sites will inspire your students and bring your teaching to life. We'd like to reassure you that we're following Government guidance to make your trip as safe and enjoyable as possible. 

Important information to consider before you book:

  • To keep everyone safe we’ve introduced limits on visitor numbers and school groups, so please bear this in mind when booking your trip.
  • Find out more about what to expect on your school visit, which also includes our Covid 19 Risk Assessment.
  • To make the planning process as easy as possible, make sure you check our Plan Your School Trip section at the bottom of this page, for updated information on the facilities at the site as well as our free resources.
  • As usual, you’ll need to book your visit at least 14 days in advance. Please check our Terms and Conditions for full details.
  • English Heritage are legally required to request and record the contact details of customers and visitors aged 16 years and over. The information that you provide will only be shared with NHS Test and Trace, if requested. For more information and for details of our safety measures, please see our what to expect page.

We’re continually updating our education offer in line with government guidance.  At some sites you might not be able to use our handling collections or costumes as part of a free self-led visit, but where we can provide hands-on items in a safe way we will. We’ve adapted our Discovery Visit workshops to follow government guidelines, but for certain sessions this hasn’t been possible – please check our schools webpages for further information.

There may be areas of our sites which are closed, so please check what’s available for your school group on our property webpages and with our booking team.  They can put you in touch with our Education Visits Officers who can offer help and guidance, so you can make the most of your school trip.

Curriculum links

Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to Osborne will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.

  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in the locality. Significant changes beyond living memory. The lives of significant individuals in the past
  • KS1 Science: Identify a variety of plants and trees, describe the basic structure of a variety of flowering plants and trees. Identify that most living things live in habitats to which they are suited, identify a variety of plants and animals in their habitats, including microhabitats
  • KS2 History: A local history study. A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils' chronological knowledge beyond 1066
  • KS2 Science: Working scientifically. Identify and name a variety of living things in the local and wider environment
  • KS2 Art and Design: Use the house and grounds as inspiration for the pupils' own work, create sketch books to record observations 
  • KS3 History: A local history study. Ideas, political power, industry and empire: Britain, 1745-1901
  • KS3 Art and Design: History of art, craft, design and architecture

Free Self-Led Visits

Enjoy a free self-led visit to Osborne and design your day to suit your curriculum needs. Explore the house and grounds, including the beach and the Swiss Cottage. In the education room, dress up like a Royal child living at Osborne and use our replica grocery, based on the original one used by the Royal children in the Swiss Cottage, to weigh out goods and work out the total cost. 

Due to limitations on capacity inside the main house and the Swiss Cottage, booking a time slot to visit these is essential. Please request a slot when making your booking. If you wish to use the Education Room, it must also be requested when making your booking. 

Enquire now

Expert-Led Discovery Visits

Our award-winning expert-led Discovery Visits are interactive and immersive. Best of all, we lead them for you. At just £100 per session per class they have been specifically designed to meet the needs of different groups across the key stages. Discover the exciting world of Victorian explorers through object handling and storytelling, have housekeeper Mrs Pilkington put your class through their paces as Victorian household staff, or discover the history and geology of the Isle of Wight.

Our Discovery Visits have been adapted to follow health and safety guidelines and will still offer your students a quality and fun learning experience.

FIND OUT MORE

Plan Your Trip

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip.

We also offer free planning visits for group leaders once you have made a booking. Our Education Booking Team is on hand to advise and help you create the best possible school trip to suit your needs and area of study.

  • Facilities
    • PARKING: Free car park with accessible parking bays, 50m from admissions centre. Coach parking is 250m from the entrance.
    • TOILETS: Toilets are available at points across the site, however this is subject to change and will be clearly signposted.
    • SWISS COTTAGE AND MUSEUM: Currently closed.
    • HOUSE: The house will be open to schools on specified days. Please contact the education booking team for further information.
    • ESTATE GROUNDS: The wide acres of the Osborne estate, including the beach, woodland walk and terraces are all open.
    • LUNCH: You are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the grounds.
    • SHOP: Shop at the admissions centre selling a range of gifts, souvenirs and books. We require you to bring your students in small groups at a time. A one way system is in place.
    • EDUCATION ROOM: The education room is currently unavailable.
    • BAG STORE: A room has been set aside where the students can store their bags whilst in the house. Otherwise they will need to carry their bags with them.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: There are 12 disabled parking bays located 50 yards from the admissions entrance. Disabled visitors may be set down directly outside admissions entrance. Queen Victoria's Private Apartments are accessible via a lift to the first floor. The Nursery is not accessible. A minibus is available to take wheelchair users to the Swiss Cottage and Queen Victoria's beach. The ground floor of the Swiss Cottage and Museum is accessible to wheelchair users. Gardens and Grounds are accessible using tarmac and impacted gravel paths. The Walled Garden and Swiss Cottage Garden are heavily gravelled and may be difficult for wheelchair users. The Rhododendron Walk is suitable for robust wheelchairs only. Queen Victoria's Beach paths, cafe, Queen Victoria's Bathing Machine and Alcove are all accessible, however there are two steps up to the beach boardwalk. The beach itself is not accessible to wheelchair users.
    • FACE COVERINGS: Face coverings must be worn in all indoor public spaces, including in our exhibitions, shops, cafés and tea rooms. We won’t be able to give you a face covering, so please come prepared so you don’t miss out.
  • Enquire now

  • School visits academic year 2020-21

    In line with government guidance, we’re pleased to confirm that over 60 of our English Heritage sites are open for education visits from 12 April, and we’re now taking bookings online up to 16 May.

    Our COVID-secure measures will remain in place until all restrictions are lifted. Visitor numbers are limited, and all bookings must be made at least 14 days in advance.

    English Heritage are legally required to request and record the contact details of customers and visitors aged 16 years and over. The information that you provide will only be shared with NHS Test and Trace, if requested. For more information and for details of our safety measures, please see our what to expect page.

    Due to the current situation we can’t answer calls as quickly as we’d like to. If you’d like more information about a site, email us and we’ll put you in touch with an Education Visits Officer.

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