Venue Focus 1: The Collection & Usher Gallery

15 September, 2013

The Collection and Usher Gallery is Lincolnshire’s premier historic and contemporary art gallery as well as an archaeology museum set in the heart of historic Lincoln.

Before 2005, The Collection was known as ‘The City and County Museum’ before it merged with the Usher Gallery and became The Collection.

A new purpose built museum was opened in 2005 to house collections of archaeology, and in the adjoining Usher Gallery, a variety of art collections are presented. Both The Collection and Usher Gallery has a dynamic programme of temporary exhibitions which combined with the permanent exhibitions bring around 120,000 visitors a year to its galleries, most of which are completely free.


Facts about the galleries

  • Evidence of Roman occupation was found in the form of a mosaic pavement that can now be seen displayed underneath the floor of The Collection’s archaeology gallery
  • Flaxengate is known to have been in existence since c.AD900 and was previously called ‘Haraldestigh’ and ‘Flaxgate’
  • Danesgate lost its original name ‘Danissegate’ during the 19th century when it then was called Bull Ring Lane before coming back to its main name in 1830
  • Where the Stokes café stands nowadays, there used to be a Victorian building named Manvers Arms Public House
  • James Ward Usher, the collector and businessman that was honoured by the city, had the sole right of the Lincoln Imp and became famous thanks to it
  • A letter sent to James Usher actually managed to reach him just with a drawing of the imp on the envelope
  • The Usher Gallery was officially opened on 25th May 1927 by the Prince of Wales
  • The Collection used to be located in a 13th Franciscan church that remained the museum’s home for almost 100 years
  • When the Collection moved to a new location, its inventory recorded 2 million objects


Lincoln’s archaeology museum and the Usher Gallery are operated by Lincolnshire County Council in partnership with the City of Lincoln Council, the Arts Council England. Supported by the Friends of Lincoln Museums and Art Gallery, the Usher Trust and the Heslam Trust.


‘Where are we now?’ by Justin Blinder, Paolo Cirio, Brian House and Jon Rafman, an exhibition part of Frequency 13, will be opening on Friday 13th at The Collection and will be on display until 12th January 2014.

 For more information:

Follow The Collection: @collectionlinc

Follow Frequency 13: @frequency_fest

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