The Ashington Group, also known as the Pitmen Painters, produced hundreds of paintings showing what life was like both above and below ground for their mining communities in Northumberland.

They began as an art appreciation class in 1934, through the WEA (Workers Education Association). Their tutor wanted them to learn about art though ‘doing’ so the group started to paint.

Over the next 50 years the Ashington Group met weekly, experimenting with techniques and materials. The story of the Ashington Group would later inspire Lee Hall’s famous play ‘The Pitmen Painters’.

‘Start painting. It’s as simple as that.’ Oliver Kilbourn

The Ashington Group Collection is on permanent display in a dedicated gallery with the support of the Ashington Group Trustees.

This experience is included at no additional cost as part of your Museums Northumberland Annual Membership. Membership is required for entry onto the museum site, but is valid for 12 months and includes unlimited return visits. However, please be aware that parking charges still apply on FREE community event days at Woodhorn Museum including Invasion Day and the Northumberland Miners’ Picnic.

Membership Prices for Woodhorn Museum:
Adult: £7.00 (Multiple adult purchased at the same time: £6.50).
Concession (OAP and student) £6.00
Children 16 and under are admitted free at all Museums Northumberland venues.

Group sheltered or supported accommodation group - Free entry
(Please telephone 01670 624455 before visiting)