Tourist Attractions York

Travel || York Castle Museum

Happy April everyone! With this first official blog post of a new month, I bring to you an exploration of the York Castle Museum. It’s part of the Yorkshire Museum Trust (along with the York Art Gallery that I wrote about last month.) 

There are several exhibitions on at the museum right now. The first of which is “Shaping the Body: 400 Years of Fashion, Food & Life”. You’ll see from my dress-up photos below that I thoroughly got stuck into the exhibit, exploring shaping norms of different eras. Let me interject now that all of those bustles were super heavy. If I had to wear them all the time, I’d only ever want to sit down and drink dainty cups of tea. 

There’s also a “1914: When the World Changed Forever” exhibit upstairs. It falls in line with all the other centenary exhibits that have been up in the UK over the past few years, but what was unique about it was that there were a lot of photos and video from the bombing of Scarborough. A lot of people might not realise that some of the first bombs to fall on Britain from abroad were dropped on Scarborough, Hartlepool and Whitby. I’d known this fact, but it was still shocking to see footage of the street that Sam’s mom lives on looking exactly the same then and now, but with several buildings bombed out. 

In the museum you can also explore an exhibit on toys from different eras. (We had a good laugh at the fact that Sam’s first gaming system is now in a museum.) There’s also an exhibit of the 60s (probably my least favourite portion of the museum); and you can explore York Castle Prison, as a lot of its 18th century cells are still functioning. 

But the most famous part of York Castle Museum’s permanent collection – and definitely my favourite part – is Kirkgate Street. Kirkgate Street is a recreated Victorian street with many different alleys and side streets that you can go down and explore. You can also go inside many of the shops that are on the street. It’s a really incredible space, actually. I expected it to be a bit hocky, but the scale and detail of it all is so impressive. 

The museum is open every day from 9:30am-5pm. Adult tickets are Β£10 and children are free. However, if you’re a York resident, you can get a YMT card for Β£11 and it gets you into all three York Museum Trust properties for free for a whole year. 

Nothing to see here. Just a lady strapping on her side bags. 

The museum is located at: Eye of York, Tower St, York YO1 9RY

Have you been in the Castle Museum before? 

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  • The problem is that I already only ever want to daintily drink tea, even sans bustle!

  • Days out like this are always super interesting – I’ve not done anything like this for ages! Love your photos <3

    G is for Gingers xx

  • This looks like such a fun outing! And ohhh man, side bags look like not so much fun, even though the costumes and outfits of the time were beautiful.

    • They were so dang heavy and I wasn’t wearing any other of the crazy kit they would have been wearing (corsets, underskirts, etc). No wonder in ye olden times women we portrayed as delicate fainting flowers – it must have been impossible to walk more than 50 m in all that! x

  • I love that you tried everything on, and that street looks amazing, I’d love something like that! Alice xxx

    • If/when you come to work you should definitely try to go. (Unless it’s during school holidays and then it would be a mad house and avoid, avoid, avoid.) It’s fun to try on but I am SO glad that we don’t wear such elaborate clothing! x

      • I totally will if/when I come up again! You mean, leg bags aren’t your jam? But you looked so lovely and…wide?! xxx

  • lot of different displays:) and it’s always fun to play dress up:)

  • That looks so cool! Will add that to things to visit in York! πŸ™‚

  • OMG I love the Victorian Street and the top wallpaper. Do you think in 100 years museums will be inviting people to squeeze into Spanx and clear plastic stripper heels?