The collections cover the history of North Ayrshire from ancient times to the present day, with emphasis on Saltcoats, Ardrossan and Stevenston. They include maritime history, costume and paintings by well-known artists. One artist, Sir John Lavery, went to school in Saltcoats.
Among the most popular items on show are a Templar's coffin, a hand-cranked vacuum cleaner and a gigantic leather boot. There is also a reconstruction of a typical Victorian Ayrshire cottage.
The temporary exhibitions include A History of Education in North Ayrshire, which runs until mid-October. It will be followed by one on Clyde shipbulding.
North Ayrshire Museum, Manse Street, Saltcoats KA21 5AA Museum officer Mark Strachan, tel 01294 464174. Admission free.