Smallest Museum in South Yorkshire is home to Tutankhamun

South Yorkshire has a brand-new museum, which may well be the smallest one in the area.

Small but perfectly formed, the new museum has been created inside a recently refurbished traditional red telephone box and will be the temporary resting place for a life-sized replica of the innermost coffin of Tutankhamun, sometimes referred to as ‘King Tut’.

Installed as part of a stunning new Egyptian exhibition recently opened in Experience Barnsley Museum, Tut' 22: The life of Tutankhamun, explores the life of the Pharaoh King during the 14th Century BC.

Curated by Barnsley-born Egyptologist Prof Joann Fletcher and over two years in the planning, it celebrates the centenary of the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamen in 1922.

Standing six feet tall, the amazing replica is the first display for the miniature museum, and has already caught the attention of passers-by.  Created by artist Amanda Stoner, it is part of Barnsley Museum’s plan to showcase Culture in unexpected places. It has been unveiled just in time for the centenary of the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb on November 4 1922.

Barnsley Museums adopted two unloved Listed red phone boxes in the town centre in 2021 and have transformed them into works of art and museum spaces, telling stories of the town’s heritage. The project is part of the Eldon Street High Street Heritage Action Zone funded by Historic England and Barnsley Council which seeks to unlock the potential of high streets across England, fuelling economic, social and cultural recovery, encouraging people to say Hi! to the high street, and breathe new life into it for future generations. The project is part of the wider regeneration of Barnsley Town Centre.

Councillor Robert Frost, Cabinet Spokesperson for Regeneration and Culture, said: “Barnsley Museums are always thinking outside the box, and want to use every space possible to showcase our borough’s amazing history. This new museum space will be an opportunity to bring Culture to the high street, and what better way than with Tutankhamun himself! Highlighting the brilliant new exhibition in Experience Barnsley Museum, which has already attracted thousands of visitors in its first week of opening, it’s a real treat and spectacular surprise for those passing.”