About Us

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About Us2021-02-12T17:57:02+00:00

About The Hunt Museum

The Hunt Museum preserves and exhibits the original artefacts gathered, over a life time, by John and Gertrude Hunt and known as the Hunt Collection. The Museum also displays its own collections, as well as visiting exhibitions of Local, National and International significance with the overall aim of maximising their cultural and educational potential for the people of Limerick and Ireland.


We are setting the sights of the Hunt Museum even higher.  Using the three platforms of a modern museum: our iconic Georgian Building with its unique collections; the digital and virtual world and our networks we have some ambitious goals.

By 2025 we will have:

  • helped boost pride in the region’s cultural heritage

  • gained international recognition for our collections

  • created new technology partnerships

  • innovated in the sector and for the museum

  • touched the hearts and minds of local and international audiences

  • improved people’s well-being and learning


Read our full plan and tell us where you can help


Business Plan 2021

  • Each year to achieve our Strategy we set out our objectives and tasks.  Have a read of what we have in store for you in 2021


The Hunt Museum was established to house the internationally important collection of approximately 2,000 works of art and antiquities formed by John and Gertrude Hunt during their lifetimes. As antique dealers and advisors to collectors they built a thriving business and also began to acquire pieces that reflected their own interests and curiosity rather than for commercial purposes.

During the latter stages of John’s life, they became increasingly aware of the scale of their collection and wished for it to remain intact.  Fortunately, The National Institute of Higher Education, later to become the University of Limerick, agreed to house part of the collection on a temporary basis. The Hunt Museum opened there, in 1978, in an exhibition room with the display designed by architect Arthur Gibney.

During this period the Irish Government had declined the offer of the Collection, so finding a suitable home and owner to take responsibility for the artefacts became more urgent. The Hunt Museum Trust was established in 1974 to hold the Collection and the property at Craggaunowen, a 16th-century Irish tower house that the Hunts had restored, in trust on behalf of the people of Ireland.

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The Building

Regarded as the most distinguished 18th century building in Limerick, the Customs House is an elegant Palladian-style building designed by the Italian architect, Davis Ducart, in 1765. It was the administrative centre for the Revenue Commissioners (including Customs and Excise) in Limerick and it was also the home of the Collector. In the 1840s with the introduction of a new postal system a Penny Post Office was opened in the Customs House.

The Office of Public Works undertook the major restoration and refurbishment of the building completing it in 1996 and so realised the dream of John and Gertrude Hunt to have their collection housed in Limerick. The Customs House opened as The Hunt Museum on 14 February.

For Press


”Enjoyable day. Some very interesting pieces! Great for someone who loves art or history.”

Aug 12, 2021


”The first visit here, many years ago, was somewhat rushed. Fortunately, not this time. Also had the benefit of two terrific tour guides.”

Jun 7, 2021


”A great collection of varied treasures laid out well. Size of museum perfect – big enough without being overwhelming. An excellent curator on hand to impart nuggets of information and to answer questions. The building itself is lovely too and of historical interest.”

Jul 4, 2021


”One visit was to The Hunt Museum, Limerick. Excellent. We have seen a lot of museums and this one is a gem. ”

Visited December 2019

RJClancy from Tubac, Arizona

”Great collection of art and artifacts. Worth every penny. The staff was great and very kind. Make sure you all find where the Renoir is, it is easy to miss.”

Visited February 2020

Dashing_pilot from Seattle, Washington

“Can’t remember how many times I have been here – but always, when in Limerick, I like to visit. Even if you have seen everything before, I find new things to look at.
There is usually a picture exhibition downstairs, this was new since my last visit and interesting.
You can easily do a day trip on the train from Dublin and visit the museum which is walking distance from the station.

I will be back!”

Visited January 2020

Margo37 from Dublin, Ireland

“What an unexpected treat!! Beautiful surroundings and the collection blew my mind! A bit of everything spanning many thousands of years. You will not be disappointed spending a few hours here.”

Visited February 2020

Emfltzy from Cork, Ireland

“This is a must-see in Limerick. Quite a fantastic museum of artefacts and paintings collected by the Hunts, with a very nice shop. Just amazing”

Visited February 2020

Ann L from Dublin, Ireland

“What an interesting place to visit. We spent about an hour and a half, and took in the costume
exhibition that was on too. The volunteer docents were very knowledgeable and happy to chat and answer questions. Worth going.”

Visited March 2020


Gillian B from Gargunnock, United Kingdom

“Very impressed with this gem of a museum. Amazing collection of a very eclectic number of pieces. So many different objects and some beautiful and priceless ones at that. Very well laid out in a non fussy way with wonderful drawers that you open which hold some lovely surprises. The building itself is pretty impressive and as for the staff (many of whom are volunteers) their passion for the collection is impressive.”

Visited July 2020

Gerry D from Arklow

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