“The Keep Military Museum houses and presents the impressive collections of the County Regiments of both Devon and Dorset from 1685 until their amalgamation into the Rifles in 2007. The building itself was originally the gatehouse for the Depot Barracks of the Dorsetshire Regiment as well as the County Armoury. The Depot Barracks were the administrative center for the Dorsetshire Regiment and its center for recruitment and training.
Our exhibitions tell the story of our regiments, and the campaigns they have been involved in through personal stories, films, photographs, testimonies, objects and documents.
Highlights include ‘The Trench’, where you can sit on a bunk in a front line dugout and experience the sounds and smell of the Western Front 100 years ago, and the ‘Dorset at War Gallery’, for an insight into the personal experiences of Dorset soldiers and their families. Other items on display include four Victoria Cross groups and Hitler’s desk, salvaged from the ruins of Berlin by men of the Dorset Regiment. Our new WW2 gallery and film gives visitors the opportunity to explore the events of the war through the eyes of the Devon and Dorsetshire soldiers, from the beaches of Dunkirk to the jungles of Burma, and from D-Day through North West Europe to eventual victory.
There are a wide range of activities for individuals, schools and families including talks, tours and dressing up; you can also follow the museum trail, or hunt down the ghostly rats that still run amok. “