Wellbeing is increasingly important for museums, as reflected in development of the Generic Social Outcomes (GSOs) framework by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA).

Surrey Heath museum’s focus is no longer purely on the presentation and preservation of history but has been widened to include additional benefits such as well-being, inclusion, community engagement, and mental health.

Our reminiscent sessions use objects, photos and other prompts to provoke memories in people.

 Handling Box Sessions

The Museum's outreach service provides reminiscence handling box sessions for residential homes. Our trained staff can visit your preferred location, with a specially picked handling box brimming with nostalgic items. Sessions last for about an hour. The handling boxes include the themes: Everyday life, Kitchen, WW2, Childhood plus many more.


 Image: Person looking at an old fashioned photograph and album

Benefits of Reminiscence

 Remembering the past can bring a great deal of satisfaction and understanding. These items can help to revive forgotten memories of key milestones of a person's life and even be shared with family members. Other benefits of reminiscence include: improves communication, raises self esteem and engagement, stimulates and empower individuals.


 Image: Artefact from Wartime; medals, photograph of a soldier and a birth certificate

Making a Booking

The sessions are £33 plus VAT.  

If you run a group that could benefit from this session please contact:  Kathy.joice@surreyheath.gov.uk or call 01276 23771

 Leaflet Download - TBC

In order to maximise your group’s enjoyment of our sessions we ask that: a maximum of 12 attendees at one time, the organiser must provide location details and parking arrangements, there must be at least one member of staff present for safeguarding purposes, a table must be made available for our objects.


Activity Packs

The museum has created activity packs for you to try out independently.  They contains handy conversation starters to inspire communication and maintain relationships with those in active living groups or residential homes. All activity packs have an associated Loans Box which can be hired from the museum.  

Please following the links to download the following activity packs - 

The 1950's - 1950s Activity Pack

World War Two - World War II Activity Pack

Victorian School Days - Victorian School Objects Activity Pack

Old Toys - Old Toys Objects and Activity Pack