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“A great museum of everday Yorkshire life with a barbaric twist!”
Review of York Castle Museum

York Castle Museum
Ranked #2 of 207 things to do in York
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Famous for its collections of costume, textiles, military and social history, York Castle Museum brings history back to life. Wander through the Victorian streets, venture into the prison cell of notorious highwayman Dick Turpin and discover what life was like on the front line in the First World War. There's something for everyone at York Castle Museum.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator
Reviewed August 2, 2013

The Castle museum itself was founded by Dr John L Kirk in 1938.He often took payment in chattels and goods instead of money from many hard-up patients in and around the North Yorkshire(then West Riding?) areas, and basically hoarded all these items until the foundation of the museum where they were presented as a historical account of Yorkshire life.
The museum is housed in the old prison buildings which were built on the site of the castle in the 18th century, the Debtors Prison (built in 1701-05 using stone from the ruins of the castle) and the Female Prison (built 1780-1785).
It is adjacent to another historic site that of Cliffords Tower a stone fortified tower rebuilt in the 13th century atop the original Motte of a Norman Motte and Bailey Castle one of the two built by the Normans to con trol river traffic along the river Ouse in and out of the city...
Inside the museum you will find artifacts from various periods of York and Yorkshire life, Kirkgate - a recreated Victorian Street, named after the museum's founder. This was redeveloped and expanded in 2012
A section entitled'Toy Stories' - A history of children's toys
Recreated period rooms including a Victorian parlour and a 17th-century dining room.
The Cells - A display about life in the prison has been opened in the cells of the old Debtors Prison. The former Condemned Cell, possibly once occupied by Dick Turpin, can also be visited.
Also in the adjoining grounds is Raindale Mill is a reconstructed early 19th century flour mill which was moved from the North York Moors to the grounds of York Castle Museum in the 1960s.

Thank Tourman2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,699 - 5,703 of 7,357 reviews

Reviewed August 2, 2013

We love the 1950s room, it was like going back home into childhood. We love also the way in which the streets have been brought back to life. Much improved from our earlier visits. we always come back to this fascinating museum and find much we missed each time.

Thank DianaWeTe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2013

I think this is probably one of the best museums in my area and good value for money as we can easily spend a couple of hours in there. The Victorian street which gradually dims to give a night time effect is fantastic and all the little shops give it an authentic Dickensian feel. What I like most about the Castle Museum is that it goes back in time through all eras. My parents who are in their 70's were certainly having a trip down memory lane. Some of the modern exhibits will be a real blast from the past. I also like the themes that run through the museum - like funerals and weddings for example, showing changes in culture and fashion through time. Particularly recommend this on a rainy day.

Thank Deborah W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2013

Although this is an excellent museum access for people with disability is very poor. Unfortunately this is not made clear at the entrance and it wasn't until my wife and I tried to move around inside the museum that this became clear. What we did see was extremely good but a large part of the museum was off limits to us as my wife does not find climbing stairs easy and there is not lift access. This should be made clear at the entrance.

1  Thank paulquest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2013

We paid a second visit to the Museum and although it is less than 12 months since we visited found that there had been a few changes. A good day out and really interesting, a lot of thought has gone into the displays. The only downside was the cafe. We hadn't planned to eat there originally but decided to have lunch there. We only had cheese and crackers but had to wait for one to be made up although it wasn't yet 1 o'clock. They had also run out of ham sandwiches for the children's lunch bags and only had cheese on offer. My grandchildren were ok with this but a family on another table had a little girl who didn't want cheese and were told that if she had the tuna she wanted, they would have to pay extra. Fair enough if she was just being picky, but she would have happily had ham and it wasn't the family's fault that the cafe had run out so early - down to bad management - so they shoud have let her have tuna without charging extra.

Thank Looefan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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