The Egypt Centre is developing ways to help people with autism experience the museum. If you have any suggestions please fill out a survey by the First Floor door to the Taliesin.
The Egypt Centre is open Tuesday to Saturday from 10:00am to 4:00pm. During the month of August the museum stays open until 5:00pm.
During the school year the Egypt Centre is quietest between 2:30 and 4:00pm as all school groups will have left. On Saturdays all year we have volunteers between the age of ten and eighteen.
The main entrance is on the south external wall of the Taliesin Art Centre on the foot road called the Mall. There are also two internal entrances from the Taliesin, one on each floor.
There are no fees at the Egypt Centre. If you don’t want to talk with the front of house staff, just enter the gallery of your choice. We do have yellow lanyards available for borrowing by the entrance to the galleries under the ‘quiet visit lanyards’ sign. These let our volunteers know that you do not want to be overwhelmed by information.
[Photo of lanyard]
If you decide to use a yellow lanyard volunteers will still answer questions and you can still participate in games. Volunteers will wait for you to start the conversation and understand if you need to take a break.
All volunteers wear lanyards so you can identify us. English speakers wear blue and white ‘staff’ lanyards, Welsh speakers wear black and orange ‘Cymraeg’ lanyards. All Egypt Centre staff are trained to answer questions and lead gallery activities.
There is a lot of extra information about our objects in gallery books. These are located near the cases and can be read by anyone, though they have to stay in the galleries. The object labels have both Welsh and English, the Welsh is red and the English is dark blue.
Toilets are located on the first floor in the Taliesin Café, just passed the ‘Shared Area.’
During term time the Taliesin Café, on the first floor, is open and sells a variety of hot and cold foods. You are also welcome to bring a ‘picnic lunch’ to eat in the Taliesin or other campus locations. There is no eating or drinking allowed in the museum. This helps protect our objects.
If you visit the Egypt Centre and need a quiet break please speak to a volunteer or member of staff. The Egypt Centre does not have a designated quiet room but the volunteers will do their best to assist you. We have a number of quieter areas in the museum itself but can use space in the Taliesin if we are particularly busy during your visit.
If the fire alarm sounds the volunteers will lead all guests to the designated safe meeting point at Flag 2. Please stay at Flag 2 until we are certain the danger is over.
Occasionally a loud tone sounds on the landing outside the office. This is not an alarm and is nothing to worry about.
There are two galleries in the Egypt Centre: the ‘House of Death’ on the ground floor and the ‘House of Life’ on the first floor. The galleries are darker and colder than the shop and landing. This helps protect our objects and there are torches available at the entrance of both galleries. The air conditioners in the galleries can be loud and, especially in the ‘House of Death’, can create a bit of a breeze.
In the ‘House of Death’ to the left of the door there is a snake hologram. This plays loud flute music. Straight ahead of the entrance is our ‘dummy mummy’ Bob where you can learn Egyptian Mummification from our volunteers. This activity includes reaching into Bob’s chest to remove his organs. Bob is a cloth doll and his organs are also made of cloth or paper mache. This is an activity that can be done one-to-one with a volunteer or as a large group.
Throughout the gallery there are depictions of various gods, especially to the left of Bob on the coffin fragments. The objects to Bob’s left have a lot of fine details that may seem overwhelming. Going on a scavenger hunt for depictions of specific gods such as ‘Hapi’ or ‘Osiris’ can be a fun way to explore the ‘House of Death’.
In the ‘House of Life’ there is a handling tray filled with real Egyptian objects. Guests are encouraged to discover more about life in Egypt through hands-on experience. This activity requires that everyone wear gloves. Cotton gloves are given out but nitrile gloves are available if you would prefer them. On the left side of the gallery, between the Pre-Dynastic and Amarna cases there are a few Casts – plaster imprints of wall art, Stella, that you can touch without gloves. Just passed the Amarna Case you can learn hieroglyphs and how Egyptians did maths.
At the back of the ‘House of Life’ there is a large Senet board game. There are instructions next to the board if you want to teach yourself and your friends, all of our volunteers can teach you too. Below the senet board are pull out drawers with various objects. There are also some below the Casts and behind the handling board table. Some of these drawers have very light-sensitive objects but all of them are fun to discover.
Behind the Senet board there is a motion censored light.
The landing on the first floor, outside the ‘House of Life’ has our Under 5s’ play area and part of our research library. The play area can get noisy but it may present a nice space to take a break from the galleries. You can look through the books in the library but they cannot leave the museum.
At the end of your visit you might like to take home a souvenir. There are many things available at the shop from books to mood rings. Near the base of the stairs there are some incense sticks that can make the shop smell a bit like perfume.