Frequently Asked Questions

After nearly five months of closure, we are delighted to be opening our doors to visitors again. In order for us to test new systems, we’re undertaking a phased reopening. We want to make a visit to Seven Stories enjoyable as possible. This means we have made some changes.

We know that you will have lots of questions so we’ve tried to answer as many as we can here:

When is Seven Stories open?

As we begin the phased reopening of Seven Stories we are trialling new opening days and times. Only the bookshop and coffee shop located at street level will be open Thursday to Sunday 11am to 1.30pm and 2pm to 4pm until further notice. We close each day for 30 minutes to allow time to clean areas open to the public.

Do I have to pay to get in?

Admission to the street level of Seven Stories is free.

What can we see and do?

To begin with, only the street level of Seven Stories, home to our brilliant independent bookshop and our Cafe on Level 2 will be open. Our bookshop features a wide range and choice of children’s books from baby and toddler picture books to young adult novels. Watch out for a number of special recommendations from our fantastic team. Don’t forget to grab a selfie with the Tiger from The Tiger Who Came to Tea and browse the selection of limited edition prints available to purchase that would brighten up any room.

Enjoy a drink and tasty treat from our coffee shop (both as a sit-in and take-out service) and indulge in the delicious range of unusual cakes, freshly supplied by Cake Stories in Jesmond, as well as other yummy treats. You can also head to our Cafe on Level 2 where we have a brand new menu featuring everything from rainbow sandwiches to teddy bear's picnics. Any food and drinks purchased at Seven Stories can also now be enjoyed in our new outdoor seating area. 

As an independent charity, every purchase in our bookshop and cafe area helps support Seven Stories in these challenging times.

What additional cleaning measure have been put in place?

We have acquired Visit Britain’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ industry standard mark which means that we have followed government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, have a Risk Assessment in place and a process to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.

We completed a deep clean of Seven Stories using Sani-Defence technology prior to opening to ensure that all surfaces in the building were germ-free. This deep clean will be repeated every four weeks by Citron. Daily cleaning routines have been increased and all staff will be wearing clear visors and gloves when serving customers. We will close our doors for 30 minutes from 1.30pm to 2pm each day to allow time to clean areas open to the public.

Do I have to wear a mask?

In line with government advice, we are asking all visitors to wear a face-covering when visiting Seven Stories. Face coverings are mandatory for all visitors except those with health and breathing issues, and children under the age of 11. Keep an eye out for a picture of the Gruffalo modelling a face mask as you arrive!

Do I need to use hand sanitiser before I visit?

Hand sanitisation stations have been installed throughout the building including the entrance and exits on street level and on Level 2 near the toilets. We ask that you use these during a visit particularly before handling books. To avoid handling items as much as possible we ask that at the till you hold books with the barcode facing up for us to scan.

Do I need to book in advance?

There is no need to book a ticket to visit us at this stage. We will be looking to introduce timed ticketed slots when we are in a position to open more of our museum but for now, you can pop in to see us any time Thursday to Sunday 11am to 1.30pm and 2pm to 4pm. Last admittance to the coffee shop is 3.30pm.

Are you limiting the number of people allowed in at any one time?

We are admitting fewer people, so if it’s busy you might be asked to queue.

Is there a one-way system in place?

Yes. A one-way system is in place. Doors are designated as entrance and exit only. There is signage clearly indicates which way to go and

You will be greeted by a member of the Seven Stories team on arrival who will show you where our new hand sanitiser stations can be found. A one-way system is in place with doors clearly designated as entrance and exit only. There is clear signage, including footprints and arrows, indicating which way to go. We ask that you please adhere to government social distancing measures during a visit.

Are your toilets available to use?

There are toilets available for customers to use on Level 2.

Can I pay with cash to purchase books, food and drinks?

We are not accepting cash payments. Card payments will be required to purchase any items.

Is your lift in use?

Our lift will only be available for visitors with access requirements.

Can I bring my pram/buggy in?

Buggies will be admitted on street level only.

Can I bring my dog?

Dogs are welcome to join their owners in our bookshop only.

Why is the rest of the museum not open yet?

Seven Stories is an old building packed full of interactive exhibitions. We want to make sure we get things right so we’re starting with a phased reopening beginning with our ground floor. Other areas of the museum will remain closed until it is safe to reopen them.

When will you announce details when more of the museum is open?

To be kept up to date with the latest news about what’s happening your can follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, sign up for our mailing list or keep an eye on our website.

Are there any exciting Seven Stories events planned?

To coincide with the phased reopening of Seven Stories we have an exciting programme of digital and outdoor events planned. Find out more here.

What happens if I had booked a ticket for an event that had to be postponed due to lockdown?

Any customers who purchased tickets for an event that had to be postponed due to lockdown will be sent an email in the next 7 days which will include a voucher code that can be used online. If you would like to donate the value of your voucher to support Seven Stories we would be very grateful. You can do so by logging into your Seven Stories account and visit our donation page.

 
My annual pass expired during lockdown. When will I find out what’s happening with it?
 
We will be contacting anyone who has an annual pass in the coming weeks to provide an update. Information will be shared ahead of the phased reopening of any paid-for areas of Seven Stories.
 
Getting in touch
 
We are currently running at reduced capacity and there is not someone currently manning our reception. If you have any questions or queries about any of the FAQs please contact us via email at info@sevenstories.org.uk
 

Please remember

Stay at home if you’re feeling unwell, or have been in contact with someone who has coronavirus, and follow NHS guidelines.
 

Your Support

We can’t wait to welcome you back to Seven Stories. As an independent charity, every purchase in our bookshop and cafe area helps support Seven Stories in these challenging times. Your commitment to our charity allows us to do what we love best - working with children's books to create playful and profound experiences for children and young people to enjoy. Being closed for such a prolonged period means that we are set to lose up to £250,000 projected income this year. If you are able to support us with a donation you can do so here. Thank you.