I only saw Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum as we were roaming around the dinosaur garden of the Oxfordshire Museum. I had never heard of it before, so I decided to go in. I thought it will be free but to my surprise, it wasn’t. I was double minded whether I should or shouldn’t go but Ay was very excited to see the tank/ cannon at the reception and as under 5s were free, I decided to pay the fee. After coming back, and researching the website, I came to know it gives free entry to visitors with a valid Blenheim Annual Pass, so I am not so happy now.. haha.. anyways it was 5£ so I shouldn’t really sulk! By the way, did I tell you the large cannon in reception fires every hour– cool ha!
SOFO Museum is the only dedicated military history museum in Oxfordshire and first opened during the summer of 2014. James Bond’s Renault 11TXR taxi from “a view to a Kill” is at the entrance. You can admire the beauty while watching the video of the car in action. You can then move on to discover stories of Oxfordshire’s county soldiers and conflict at home and abroad. The permanent exhibits include the life of a ‘21st Century Soldier’, the ‘Blood and War’ of the frontline, Winston Churchill and the Queens Own Oxfordshire Hussars and the ‘Liberation of Bergen-Belsen’ by the Oxfordshire Yeomanry as well as ‘Prisoners of War, at Home and Abroad’.
There are a number of interactive features to keep the kids interested. We loved dressing up as a soldier (with the helmet, goggles, walkie talkie and uniform) while listening to the documentary sitting in the interactive, life size replica section of a glider used on D-Day. You can also dress up as a secret agent, have a go at operating a radio, tap out and send your own coded messages in the Secret War display, try to work out the hidden objects in mystery boxes, wear bullet proof vests and earn about military medicine through interactive puzzles and quizzes. There is a huge medal collection along the corridor which Ay took a lot of interest in. There are other interesting bits like the light ejector seat, storage trunks, replica bombs, recreated war Trench.
Kids can take part in one of the several trails as they roam around the museum. There is also a Kids’ Art Cart where you can ‘Make & Take’ activities with Themed colouring sheets and simple paper craft activities. Make your own souvenir to take home!
You can combine this with a visit to the Blenheim Palace. Read our kids/ family focussed review of the Huge palace HERE
🗺 Address: Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum, Park Street, Woodstock, OX20 1SN
🎟 Free entry for visitors with a current and valid Blenheim Annual Pass. I did not know this, paid the full adult fee (6£)- under 5s free
⏰ Open Tuesday- Sunday. please see website for updated times HERE
🚘 No dedicated parking but free off street timed parking (3 hours free) on the high street. We did not have any problem as we went on a weekday but it may be busy on weekends or holidays.
🚻 Toilets in The Oxfordshire Museum next door
🍕 Cafe in The Oxfordshire Museum next door
🧺 Picnics allowed. Outdoor seating in a beautiful garden Enjoy the café produce whilst admiring the garden or have picnic on the lower lawn.
🦽The museum offers disabled access throughout including a disabled access toilet and lift. The lift allows access to the first floor Research Centre which is not typically open to the general public, but may be used for viewing a number of paintings mounted on the walls around the staircase. Contact HERE if you have any specific needs.