Welcome to the MoWJ
The Museum of Whitby Jet is a visual feast for the eyes and a fascinating insight into the history and heritage of one of Britain’s most iconic gem materials. With a focus on telling the story of Whitby jet, from its geological formation to its popular uses throughout history and becoming one of the most successful gemstone materials ever used in jewellery manufacture, the museum takes you on a journey through time with some of the most fantastic examples of Whitby jet jewellery and ornaments you will ever see, with an aim to preserve, educate and enthuse future generations with the story of Whitby jet.
The museum will always be free of charge to enjoy and is a popular learning experience for people all ages. Look out for our different exhibitions and events happening throughout the year. For more information click here.
Shop Whitby Jet
Our Church Street jewellery boutique - just a few yards walk from the Museum of Whitby Jet - has been manufacturing and selling Whitby Jet since 1860 and is Whitby's Original Whitby Jet Shop. As an iconic landmark and a must-visit location within the Town, W Hamond also offer the world's largest selection of Whitby Jet jewellery online at www.whamond.com
With a firm belief that the history and heritage of Yorkshire’s gemstone should be shared with the world; our dedicated museum is just the next chapter in W Hamond’s legacy.
All those involved in the Museum of Whitby Jet are passionate about British Gemstones and particularly Whitby Jet. We want to continue to build on its reputation as revered and wearable jewellery, whilst continuing to widen the knowledge base and insight into the UK’s most treasured gemstone.
In an increasingly digital world we live in, the Museum of Whitby Jet offers a physical location in which to enjoy and submerge in the history, education and most of all the enjoyment of Whitby Jet. Located in the heart of the Whitby town and close to where the finest jet material is sourced, we offer an iconic destination to visitors both at home and overseas.
Established in 1860 we are proud to be the oldest Whitby Jet shop still in business. This experience, alongside showcasing Whitby Jet around the world for over two decades, we know how many opinions and often misinformation is circulated concerning Whitby Jet. We aim to break through the misunderstanding and provide a definitive insight into our treasured gemstone.
Situated at the bottom of Whitby’s famous 199 steps W Hamond jewellers is the oldest manufacturers and retailers of Whitby Jet jewellery and ornaments in the world.
Opened in 1860, the original boutique was owned by James Storr, a name which can still be seen on the Victorian tiles that decorate the front of the shop.
Over generations, the name James Storr has evolved to become W. Hamond and the business is now recognised within Britain’s jewellery industry as being a leading innovator in design and manufacture.
Over the years, W. Hamond has acquired an unrivalled collection of antique Whitby Jet as well as the largest specimen of rough Whitby Jet in the world, it was this responsibility that led to the decision to open the Museum of Whitby Jet located in the heart of Whitby’s old town.
From the outset, getting the right location for the Museum of Whitby Jet was essential and when Wesley Hall became available it provided the perfect fit. Our ethos was to transform, repair and conserve the building into a condition where it would not need to be touched again for another hundred years. To achieve this, we decided that no expense would be spared and anything that needed repairing would be matched up as closely as possible to the original, rather than being replaced with modern alternatives. No matter how long it took, we would stick to this philosophy.
The two biggest changes we implemented in Wesley Hall were the new disabled access to the side of the building and the spiral staircase put in to gain access to the upstairs library and archives.