Describe Online


The museum area of the building is four-sided with the main entrance in the southwest corner. The west side of the building is much shorter than the east, hence the north side actually runs northeast/southwest. A triangular conservatory-style extension, with a sloping roof, is attached to the southeast corner of the building, this houses the cafe and restaurant, whilst the shop and entrance hall jut south from the museum area.

Inside the Building


The irregular shape of this building leads to a complex layout in which there are more features between the north and south sides as you progress towards the east side of the building.

The actual layout of this space is further complicated by glass cases and other exhibits, which makes our normal means of describing internal spaces impractical. We're therefore going to explain the routes through the space in terms of defined passages. The next page will describe the audio tour, which will summarise how you're intended to progress around the Museum. This tour does not address all 15 designated areas on the map given to us at the time of our survey and we believe that the regular public tour will follow these sections in numeric order.

Routes Around the Museum Space

You enter the building, via two sets of doors facing north. The enquiry desk is to your right after a few metres and beyond this is the shop. The counter is to your right, whilst to your left is a wide range of cards, prints and other items for sale. Beyond this is the Courtyard from which the public tour starts. Three replica rooms from Burrell's home, Hutton Castle, are located around this area. The drawing room is to the north, the dining room is to your right as you enter the courtyard and the hall is beyond this, beside the southeast corner of the courtyard.

If you continue (north) from the courtyard, you enter the Ancient Egyption area, which is in the northwest corner of the building. Turn right (northeast), you pass through the Ancient Greek and Roman, Chinese Art and Gothic Art sections, along the north side. The Gothic Art section occupies the northeast corner of the building.

If you turn right (east) into the passage between the shop and the Hutton dining room, you go through an arch then pass the following features on your left:

On the south side of the Ancient Greek and Roman section is the Hutton drawing room. Steps up from the east side of this area lead to the Picture Gallery which is established in five rooms (leading east) on the mezannine floor. You return from this via the same steps, being careful to avoid the glass cases on the wall to your right beyond the foot of the stairs. Note that those needing to use a lift to reach the Picture Gallery should contact staff to arrange this.

Four passages lead south from the Chinese Art area. The first leads across the Tapestry Gallery, west of the Lecture Theatre, to the south side of the building. The other three terminate in the Tapestry Gallery.

There are four exits from the south of the Gothic Arts Area. The first leads into a room with stained glass and then into the north passage of the Tapestry Gallery. The second is the passage which leads, via the Armoury, past (west of) the Needlework Room, across the north passage of the Tapestry Gallery, past the children's area (to the east), across the main passage of the Tapestry Gallery, then between the Lecture Theatre (west) and Exhibition Gallery (east) to the south side, overlooking the cafe.

The third exit leads south into the carpeted floor of the Needlework Room, whilst the fourth is the east passage, which leads south from the Gothic Arts area, following the east side of the building. This passes through the Islamic Arts area, past (east of) the two 16th and 17th Century Rooms, the two entrances to the Burrell-Whistler Correspondence Area, past the east room of the Tapestry Gallery, then, through the Montron Arch to the south side of the building, overlooking the cafe.

The Tapestry Gallery runs east from a blank wall leading north from the northwest corner of Hutton Hall to the east passage. As you continue east, you cross the passage between Hutton Hall and the Lecture theatre. A room now lies north of here, with a stone floor, separated from this passage by pillars. As you continue east, the left-hand side retreats into another area west of the passage leading north from between the Lecture Theatre and Exhibition Gallery. Turn left then right here for the Children's Area.

Continuing east, you move onto a stone floor, then through a small doorway into a wooden floored room from which a door leads north into the Burrell-Whistler Area. Continue east into the east passage.

Another passage runs east from that to the west of the Lecture Theatre, lying north of the rooms of the Tapestry Gallery. This passes south of the room with stained glass before crossing the passage through the Armoury then passing south of the Needlework Room. You can turn left here, into the southwest corner of the Needlework Room, or right (south) to join the main passage of the Tapestry Gallery. The other entrance to the Needlework Room is from the stone floor of the Gothic Arts area to the north, from which you pass through an ornately carved stone archway.

The Burrell-Whistler Area has two entrances leading west from the east passage. These are on each side of a staff-only room. The area within this space also contains a flight of stairs, for staff use only. Two doors from the north of this area lead into the southern 16th and 17th Century room.

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The Audio Tour


© 2005, Terry Robinson