Exclusive Terry Pratchett exhibition at The Salisbury Museum


Although this exhibit is now over, on Twitter @terryandrob said:

“Now that has closed its doors for the last time we’ll answer a few of your questions; 1. We couldn’t extend our stay as a new exhibition is already moving in. 2. No. We won’t be touring. 3. Yes. We have future plans. Watch this space!”


The Salisbury Museum, the Estate of Sir Terry Pratchett and Paul Kidby present a new and exclusive exhibition ‘Terry Pratchett: HisWorld’. It opened at The Salisbury Museum on 16 September 2017 and runs until Sunday 14 January 2018.

In a first for the museum, this major exhibition explores the life of Sir Terry Pratchett and gives a privileged insight into the man who created some of literature’s most enduringly popular fantasy worlds and characters.

Rob Wilkins, manager of Sir Terry’s estate said, ‘The global success of his work and the outpouring of affection for Terry during his life and after his death highlight the importance of this exhibition. Terry left behind so many words, into which this exhibition will provide a tantalizing window into their creator and the private space in which they were created.’

‘Terry relished the opportunity to connect with his readers and we have no doubt that this opportunity for visitors to immerse themselves wholly in his life and work, and to be able view some of his treasured possessions, from his Knightly sword to his Blue Peter badge, would have both delighted and amused him.’

The exhibition features artwork by Terry himself, and over 40 stunning original paintings and drawings by Paul Kidby, Terry’s artist of choice. Paul has designed the Discworld book jackets since 2002 and has illustrated many Discworld publications including the 2001 novella The Last Hero and The Art of Discworld.

Paul said, ‘It has been really exciting selecting some of my favourite Discworld paintings for the ‘Terry Pratchett: HisWorld’ exhibition. Many of the artworks are from Terry’s own personal collection and have not been previously exhibited. It is therefore a real honour to be able to show them together for the first time in the galleries of the museum in Salisbury, my home city. Visitors will be able to see many of their favourite Discworld illustrations up close and personal and celebrate the wonderful legacy of a great author who has inspired so many, including me!’

Paul’s work also features in an exhibition ‘Paul Kidby: The Charmed Realm’, which runs alongside the ‘HisWorld’ exhibition, from 2 September 2017 to Saturday 6 January 2018, featuring Paul’s illustrations from the book by Paul and his wife Vanessa.

This image-rich exhibition, also includes an exclusive opportunity to see work by Josh Kirby who first illustrated the Discworld. Terry said, ‘I only invented the Discworld, Josh created it.’ The images created first by Josh Kirby and then by Paul Kidby, have helped bring Terry’s world of fantasy and its characters to life, encouraging readers to pick up the books, tempted by their amazing covers.

Rob Wilkins added, ‘We are delighted with this unique look into Terry’s world. This exhibition builds upon Paul’s definitive and breath-taking vision of Terry’s work, and will give readers old and new an insight into both his creative endeavours, spanning his entire career, as well as his life away from the keyboard.’

The star of the show is a full-size recreation of Terry’s office – known as The Chapel – quite literally the place where so many of his books began their life. For the visitor, this represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience Terry’s world as he worked and the objects in situ with which he chose to surround himself.

There are many firsts:

  • The chance to see Terry’s first published short story – The Hades Business – prepared as a piece of homework but typed up by his aunt and submitted to Science Fantasy magazine. The story yielded the princely sum of £14, which Terry used to buy his first typewriter, an Imperial 58. This typewriter will be on public display for the first time.
  • A new commission from Paul Kidby
  • The first chance to see Paul Kidby’s design for a statue of Terry, which will go on display in Salisbury
  • The first opportunity to see Paul Kidby’s ‘Great A’Tuin’ owned by Terry, which has never been on display before

To hold this exhibition at Salisbury Museum is very relevant to Terry’s story. Terry moved to what he described as a ‘Domesday manorette’ near Salisbury in 1993. His affinity with the Chalke Valley is reflected in the books he wrote. He drew on his personal experiences and fascination with the chalk downland when creating his characters and stories, especially the Tiffany Aching novels. Terry was also a patron of a number of local causes and was actively involved with local communities.

Museum details

The Salisbury Museum
The King’s House
65 The Close

Monday – Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sundays (until 29 October 2017) 12 midday – 5pm