The Trust

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Ripon Museum Trust Mission Statement

The Ripon Museum Trust exists to present to the widest possible audience the regional story of law and order and the treatment of the poor; and what lessons these have for the future, interpreted through the three museums and collections.

Aims of the Trust

  • To build a reputation as the regional centre for promoting and understanding the history of law and order.
  • To enhance access for all audiences, to learn from and to enjoy the museums and their collections.
  • To achieve consistent national standards of documentation and conservation for the museum buildings and their collections.
  • To contribute to the cultural life of Ripon
  • To develop a sustainable future for the Trust by the growth of a properly resourced organisation, working in partnership with those who share our objectives.

How we began

The RIPON CIVIC SOCIETY from its inception in 1968 had been concerned at the lack of museum coverage in the City which has resulted from the closure of the City Museum at Thorpe Prebend House in 1956.  This was to be made worse by the closure of the Wakeman’s House Museum in 1987.  The Society had continued to press the Local Authorities to provide premises for another museum.

In 1981 the Old Liberty Prison (built in 1816) became vacant and it was decided to set up the Ripon Museum Trust with the intention of opening up the Ripon Prison and Police Museum there.  Ripon Museum Trust was granted chartable status in 1982.

Progress of the Trust:

  • The Prison and Police Museum was opened in 1984
  • In 1994 the Trust obtained a lease for the former Vagrant’s Cell Block at the old Workhouse in Allhallowgate and opened the Workhouse Museum there in 1996.
  • In 2000 the Trust opened up the old No. 1 Court in the court building which had closed in 1998 as the Courthouse Museum.
  • In 2009 work began on restoring the Workhouse Garden.
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