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See a wide variety of changing exhibitions in the Art Gallery’s four gallery spaces including selections from the borough’s impressive Art Collection and work by contemporary artists of national and international significance. A summary of our strategy for the collection and exhibitions can be found here.

You can find information about our current exhibitions here.

Information about our past exhibitions can be found here.

You can find out more about the history of the art collection and view images online via the Collection page. Currently only a selection of the collection can be searched online, although this database will continue to grow as more of our collections are digitised.

Opening Times

Tuesday-Saturday 10am-5pm
Art Cafe: 10am-4pm

FREE Admission

Christmas hours: Closing at 3pm on Saturday 24 and 31 December 2016. Closed on: Monday 26, Tuesday 27 December 2016 & Monday 2 January 2017. Open as normal on 28-30 December 2016 and from 3 January 2017.

Contact Information

Main Reception: 01706 924492

Visitor Information Centre: 01706 924928

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Meetings: Second Tuesday of every month

Dates: 11 October, 8 November, 13 December 2016 & 10 January 10, 14 February, 14 March 2017
No booking required - pay on the day.

For many years the Friends have been helping the Art Gallery to conserve and acquire paintings for the Collection. Talks by invited speakers about historic and contemporary art and craft are held most months with the occasional trip to visit other art collections.

Venue: Talks held at Touchstones Rochdale, The Esplanade, Rochdale OL16 1AQ

Time: Tea, coffee and biscuits served from 12.15pm-12.45pm in the Studio, Guest Speaker from 12.45pm –1.45pm

Price: Talks cost £3 per person for members; £4 for non-members including refreshments. Payable on the door – no booking required. All welcome.

Bookings/enquiries: Jenny Buckley 01706 358686 or Touchstones Rochdale 01706 924492.

All are welcome to join Friends of Rochdale Art Gallery. 2015 Annual Membership £10, cheque payable to FRAG. c/o Touchstones Rochdale, The Esplanade, Rochdale OL16 1AQ or bring your cheque to a meeting.

Further information from the Chair, Jenny Buckley on 01706 358686.

Touchstones Rochdale has a wide variety of volunteering opportunities and are always looking for people to come and help out.

Opportunities include working in our gallery spaces to welcome visitors in the spaces; helping our education team prepare handling boxes, supporting our programme team to run events and many more opportunities. For those looking to volunteer with a background and qualification working in the Heritage Sector, we do have a placement scheme available in the Arts & Heritage Resource Centre. For more information, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

View our artworks on Art UK.

Rochdale Arts & Heritage Service holds a richly varied collection of around 1,500 works of art of regional and national significance.

The collection belongs to Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council, but since 2007 has been cared for by Link4Life's Arts & Heritage Service on behalf of the council. The collection is primarily displayed at Touchstones Rochdale, formerly known as Rochdale Art Gallery. When the Gallery opened in 1903, it did so with 164 donations, primarily given by wealthy local textile industrialists.

The collection has continued to develop ever since through a mix of donations and purchases and the Gallery works with organisations such as the Contemporary Art Society to make contemporary acquisitions. Highlights of the collection include an Italian panel painting dating from the 1420s by Giovanni di Paolo; a typical sentimental Victorian painting by Charles Burton Barber called 'A Special Pleader' which is probably the Gallery’s best known painting due to its reproduction on biscuit tins and jigsaws; and 'Woman’s Head with a Yellow Background' by Lucian Freud from 1963.

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Access

Touchstones Rochdale is fully accessible for people using wheelchairs. There are three designated parking bays for blue badge holders outside the centre.