Loan Boxes

Discover Downham has Community Loan Boxes which are available to local schools and groups, home teachers, care homes for reminiscence, etc.

They use original and reproduction artefacts and documents to help stimulate learning or reminiscence. The objects - with very few exceptions - can all be handled. The boxes also contain some basic background information about the items together with ideas for possible activities.

Whilst primarily aimed at schools they are also wonderful for unlocking the past for elderly people and engaging them in conversation.

The Loan Boxes are available for collection from Discover Downham by arrangement.

There is an administration fee of £15 for the first week, £5 per week after that - with a maximum loan time of 3 weeks.

Boxes available

WWII and the Home Front

Box 1: Evacuation/Air Raids & Gas Masks

Box 2: Make Do and Mend/Rationing & Dig for Victory


Box 3: Life on the Fens 100 years ago


Box 4: Working life

Please enquire. For a full list of contents or to book a box, please email with your contact details and the dates you require.

Archive Enquiries

The Heritage Centre provides a service for enquiries and research into the archives. If we hold the information requested there will be an administrative charge of £10 per hour with notification if a charge is likely to exceed £10.

Enquiry request form

Do you have any memories, photos or artefacts that help to tell the story of Downham Market and the surrounding area?

We would love to hear from you, please contact us with any information.

Speakers and Town Walks

We can give a talk to your organisation on the following subjects or a guided walk around the town centre.:

  • The Rivers of the Wash and King John’s treasure.
  • Captain George Manby - inventor of the ship to shore rescue device.
  • The Development of Downham Market & District Heritage Society.
  • Downham Market's History - as seen by the wise woman. History of Downham Market and the Clackclose Hundred
  • Bread or Blood – The Downham Riots
  • Charles I escape from Parliament via Downham Market

The fee charge for a speaker is £40 plus travelling expenses with all money going to support the work of Discover Downham