Opening Hours

We are usually open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, although this can sometimes change at short notice.
We may be closed for teaching during term time.

Please check the museum’s calendar before you visit us, and remember that group visits must be booked in advance!

The Cole Museum is centred at the heart of a working University building, and we must ask our visitors to be considerate of our staff and researchers working on the upper floors by keeping noise levels to a minimum. We regret that, as a result, the museum is not suitable for children under the age of 5.

About the museum

The Cole Museum of Zoology is owned and managed by the University of Reading

It was established by Professor Francis Cole in 1906 when the University was known as University College Reading. The Cole Museum of Zoology represents a snapshot of animal diversity in the early 20th century and has always been used to teach zoology and comparative anatomy. The Museum is home to thousands of specimens of great zoological significance, including taxidermy, skeletons, histological preparations, fluid-preserved dissections, fossil material, casts, and some superb models of developmental stages and extinct animals.

Cole Museum Highlights

Introducing some of our flagship specimens who you must meet when you come to visit us!

Virtual Museum

Bringing the Cole Museum to you... We are building a virtual Cole Museum to give you an advance look at what the new displays will be about when we open [...]


About Our Collections Francis Joseph Cole was appointed to ‘University College Reading’ in 1906 and was soon promoted to the position of Professor of Zoology. A passionate and creative collector [...]

Join Our Community

Free museum event next week 1st June!
Come and visit us in the museum for talks, honey tasting, plant sniffing and a walk around our small but lovely museum.
Norman is waiting. @Eastreadingcom @UniRdg_Ento @ReadingBioSci @UniofReading @EventReading
ColeZoology photo
  • The Cole Museum of Zoology

    University of Reading
    RG6 6UA

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