Artist Sarah Lowe and her work, which was inspired by stories of medical care in the Workhouse
Artist Sarah Lowe and her work, which was inspired by stories of medical care in the Workhouse

Ripon Museums launch new Exhibition to mark their reopening

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The Workhouse Museum, Prison & Police Museum and Courthouse Museum will reopen on Monday 17 May, with a new exhibition open to visitors.

Lives Unravelled is a series of textile installations created by Yorkshire-based textiles group 6-Ply. It will be on display at the Workhouse Museum from Monday 17 May to Sunday 5 September.

Inspired by historical research into the theme of workhouse women, the artists have used a variety of materials and techniques to convey the real experiences and imagined emotions of being a woman in Ripon Workhouse. Together the installations form a unique and beautifully-crafted exhibition that has been entirely curated by 6-Ply with the support and guidance of Ripon Museums’ curator.

Pieces installed as part of the exhibition are Room for Mother and Infant, by Hazel Waite; Jane Button’s “Fancy Apron”, by Sarah Lowe; Veg, Glorious Veg, by Mary Exelby; Apron of Feelings, by Jenny Bradbury; and Fragments, by Eileen Sweeney.

Helen Thornton, Director at Ripon Museum Trust said:

It’s so exciting to be able to reopen our museums with this very moving and powerful temporary exhibition by local textiles group 6-Ply, inspired by the lives of women who lived and worked in Ripon Workhouse. We’re delighted to share these works with visitors and I hope they encourage people to consider the lives of people who lived and died here.

Following the reopening on Monday 17 May, the museums will be open Tuesday to Sunday, plus selected Bank Holidays, including Monday 31 May.



Entrance to the exhibition is included in the cost of museum entry. All tickets to Ripon Museums are valid for repeat visits over a 12-month period. Visit riponmuseums.co.uk for bookings or telephone 01765 690799. Ripon Museums have COVID-19 safety measures in place and have been awarded the Visit Britain We’re Good to Go industry standard.

Opening hours

The Workhouse Museum & Garden is open six days a week (closed Mondays) 11am – 4pm.
The Prison & Police Museum is open six days a week (closed Mondays) 1pm – 4pm.
The Courthouse Museum is open six days a week (closed Mondays) 1pm – 4pm.
The museums also open on selected Bank Holidays and will be open on Monday 31 May.


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