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Deaf Heritage Centre, UK

UK Deaf Heritage Centre, UK

Deaf Heritage Centre, UK

Manchester Deaf Centre
Crawford House
Booth Street East 
M13 9GH



Manchester Deaf Centre, Crawford House
Booth Street East,
Manchester M13 9GH

"Set up in 2006, the Deaf Museum and Archive has grown into a credible national collection consisting of numerous artefacts, deaf artwork and paper archive collections of all kinds.

We have been closed for 16 months since March 2020 due to COVID-19 Government restrictions but we have now reopened in Manchester Deaf Centre thanks to grants from the Department of Digital Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) Cultural Recovery Fund."


"The Deaf Museum had its first trial opening on Friday evening 1 October 2021 with a cheese and wine event for our trustees. This was followed by two group visits by members of Manchester Deaf Centre who have been anxious to look round the museum while it was going through re-construction. Other successful trial openings were made during November 2021.

We will be open to groups wishing to visit the Deaf Heritage Centre after February 2022. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for an arranged visit for groups of people.

We will be open for drop-in visitors on the following dates (all Saturdays):

26 February   10am-3pm
26 March   10am-3pm
23 April  10am-3pm
21 May   Spring Workshop (see below)
26 June   10am-3pm

It should be noted that we have now become the Deaf Heritage Centre from 1 November 2021."

Update 2:

" We have recently appointed a new part-time Curator of Heritage and Collections for the Museum and another part-time position to take charge of our Deaf archives as an archivist."

mini fingerspelling sweater photofingerspelling sweater 1

Maureen Jackson about one of the exhibits at the Museum: a sweater with fingerspelling (BSL with English Voice Over, December 2021)


My name is Maureen.  
Do you think the Deaf Museum is really important especially for the future of our children?

Yes, we've got artefacts from 1600s. And then what happened in terms of banning sign really bolted. Still this is around, but the museum which is really, really important.

 I think we need to preserve as much as we can for the future of deaf children, and people should be aware of possible of the Deaf history and also value it.

I think a real life Museum is better rather than an online facility. I mean a website is useful, but it's nice to touch.

On a website, you can't do that you see just 2D images, not what to actually be in the room as these artefacts.  

On a web site you perhaps got access to lots of things. It's different, but that's my view. I think that real artefacts is really important.

I am going to explain about this jumper only watch the unique type. Let me just see when this was made. It was found and donated in 2010.

Somebody was clearly destroying stuff into a scale. And a person saw this beautiful jumper.

They knew it was linked to the deaf community and then managed to save it and they donated it to the museum here.

The fingerspelling chart is on the jumper. Very, very valued, very valuable with fingerspelling stamps on it.

Do we know who made it? Nobody knows anything about it.


A fieldtrip to British Deaf Museum and Manchester Deaf Centre

by Junhui Yang, UCLan, December 2021

The twenty BSL & Deaf Studies students at University of Central Lancashire (UCLan, UK), 2 senior lecturers and 2 interpreters went to the Manchester Deaf Centre to  visit the British History Museum. The Museum recently located from it’s previous address at Warrington.

The new displays were expansive and much more visual than in its previous home. The first display that catches the eye is a huge Deaf History timeline on a banner (see photo 1). A UCLan logo is included in the timeline because our Deaf Studies course established in 1993. We felt proud.

Poster Deaf Museum Manchester

Photo 1

The students were welcomed by Director of the British Deaf History Museum Peter Jackson and volunteer Maureen.

Peter gave a presentation explaining that although the British Deaf History Society was established in 1993, the Deaf museum was established in 2006. Peter also explained how they had diligently built up a huge archive of historical documents and equipment relating to Deaf people. Two staff members (in Museum Studies) then gave the students a personal guided tour of the museum, stopping to explain the background to each exhibit and the reason why they were displaying it.

 deafblind equipment BDM

 A display about DeafBlindness

The students found it incredibly useful to be able to see and touch the documents and objects which they had preciously studied and heard about from their lectures at the university (see photo 3 &4 ).

Photo Peter Jackson Photo of students
Photo 3 Photo 4


The students were thrilled by their experience and said it had enriched their understanding and appreciation of Deaf culture and a greater appreciation of their degree course.

They also visited the Deaf club in the Riley Bar and meeting room were local Deaf people regularly meet and host workshops such as the “Where is the interpreter?” Campaign. There they saw a tribute and photo of DR Terry Riley OBE, a hugely influential Deaf figure from Manchester (see the photo 5 & 6).

Terry Riley Tribute Terry Riley Tribute 2
 Photo 5  Photo 6

 Three members of staff in the Salford Deaf Advocacy Service explained their roles and the services they offer the community of Greater Manchester. Two presenters, Dani and Claire, graduated from the BSL & Deaf Studies course at UCLan. They also encouraged the current students to come and work in their voluntary service which would help the local Deaf community and also benefit the students ongoing learning and understanding of the Deaf community (See photo 6). We already have 3rd year students volunteering within their service.

Students listening to presentation