Exciting news! We have teamed up with the Bradford Police Museum and started a new project to develop our historic police collections. This Q&A with Project Curator, Esther Graham (EG), explains more about our plans.
What is the project about?
This project is designed to develop the historic police material held at both museums. We will firstly be working behind the scenes, making sure all the cataloguing and information about the collections we hold is up to scratch. This will then contribute to the next stage of the project which will be more about developing events and enhancing our displays about historic policing. We will explore key themes that come to light at each museum and consider what the collections can tell us about contemporary law enforcement.
Why Ripon and Bradford?
Ripon Museums Trust is also known as The Yorkshire Law and Order Museums – and is home to one of the largest regional collections of material relating to policing in Yorkshire. Bradford Police Museum is situated in the historic City Hall, Bradford and has a significant police collection relating to policing in the city from the 19th century to the present day. Together, the museums offer diverse perspectives on the changing nature of policing through the centuries as well as the different approaches to rural policing and the policing of a large and diverse city environment.
Have you worked with similar collections in the past?
Police collections are new to me, but I have previously worked with rural and agricultural collections and on museum projects across Yorkshire. My background is actually in anthropology, which started my interest in museum collections, but like many curators I have become expert in all sorts of unexpected areas, from the history of the seaside to the German navy of the First World War!
Can people get involved?
We are always need help from volunteers! If you are interested at working on this particular project, please just get in touch with me. Or maybe you or someone you know worked for or had a connection to the police – if so you may have information, memories and memorabilia which you may like to share with us? I will be collecting oral histories from people who are interested in sharing their experiences and memories of policing in the region. If there is anything you’d like to ask or share then get in touch.