Beamish is a world famous open air museum, telling the story of life in North East England during the 1820s, 1900s & 1940s.
Beamish was the vision of Dr Frank Atkinson, the Museum’s founder and first director.
Frank had visited Scandinavian folk museums in the early 1950s and was inspired to create an open air museum for the North East. He realised the dramatically-changing region was losing its industrial heritage. Coal mining, ship building and iron and steel manufacturing were disappearing, along with the communities that served them.
Frank wanted the new museum to “illustrate vividly” the way of life of “ordinary people” and bring the region’s history alive.
Beamish remains true to his principles today and brings history to life for hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.