New signs have gone up at the Ashmolean Museum reminding visitors to wear face masks to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Staff are wearing face coverings and visitors to the Beaumont Street attraction, which reopened on Monday, are being asked to wear them if they are able to.

Dr Xa Sturgis, director of the museum, said: "It is wonderful to be able to welcome people back - they have been sorely missed.

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"Art needs an audience and at a time like this we are all in need of the things museums offer us – enjoyment, reflection and escape."

In addition to the permanent collections, people will be able to visit the Young Rembrandt exhibition which will be extended until November.

The museum will also show a new free exhibition, Scene Through Wood: a Century of Wood Engraving which includes 100 astonishing works by artists from the 19th century right up to the present.

Over the past few weeks, Ashmolean staff have worked tirelessly to adapt the museum building and put in place measures to ensure people will have a safe and enjoyable visit. 

The Ashmolean has achieved the industry safety standard, ‘We’re Good to Go’, awarded by Visit England.

Safety measures will include: timed, ticketed entry and limited visitor numbers, one-way routes, takeaway catering from the café and outside seating on the forecourt.


There will be card payments only in the shop and café, and all toilets and baby-changing rooms will be open.

Lifts will be single-occupancy (or single-household) only and will be reserved for people who need to use them for mobility reasons.

Queuing systems will be in place to maintain social distancing and lockers and cloakrooms will remain temporarily closed, as will the rooftop restaurant.


There will be enhanced cleaning and hygiene including hand-sanitiser stations and events and tours are temporarily suspended for safety reasons.