Formerly known as the Museum of British Road Transport, the Coventry Transport Museum is located in Coventry City Centre, England. Coventry was previously hailed as the centre of the British car industry; thus, making it the perfect location for a museum which houses a collection of British-made road transport.
After it became clear that the road transportation collection that was occupying the Herbert Museum and Art Gallery was outgrowing the space, the museum was opened in 1980. The current collection of vehicles that the museum holds is acknowledged as one of the finest and largest in the world.
In 1937, the 1st exhibits were acquired when Samuel Bartleet decided to give his own private collection of cycles to the City of Coventry as a gift. In 1952, the first motor cars were added to the collection, and the collection has continued to grow since then.
The first major public exhibitions started in 1960. This event was held in time for the opening of the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum. As the collection continued to grow, the vehicles were placed in various local sites, until they were eventually transferred to their current location in 1980.
A journey through time
In this museum, you’ll get to know the stories of the people who were responsible in making Coventry as the centre of world’s motor and cycle industries. Plus, visitors are given the chance to get up close and personal with the vehicles that defined some of history’s most important moments.
Coventry Transport Museum is laid out as a journey through time. Here, guests will be welcomed to the 19th Century streets and shall be greeted with the first cars, carriages and bicycles. Also, they’ll be exploring the first car factories and witness their wartime destruction. Your journey shall continue through the Ghost Town, Spirit of Seeds and Boomtown galleries where you will be taken right up to the present day.
The museum houses a collection of 120 motorcycles, 300 cycles, 250 cars and commercial vehicles plus over a million ephemera and archive items.
While not everything is on display, there is so much to see in the museum. The Daimler Wagonette (the oldest car), Queen Mary’s Daimler, Thrust SSC (holds the current World Land Speed Record) and Lady Diana’s Mini Metro are just some of the vehicles that you shouldn’t miss as you explore the displays.