Festive helpers needed for city workhouse

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Ripon Museums are appealing for helpers to hang holly and add a little Christmas Sparkle to the Workhouse Museum in preparation for the forthcoming festive season.

Young and old can pop along and lend a hand in decorating Ripon’s Workhouse Museum on Monday November 14 from 9.30am–noon.

“For everyone helping with the decorations entry is free, so it’s a great opportunity to take a look behind the scenes while decorating these unique historical buildings,” said volunteers manager Wendy Hunwick Brown.

“And it is also a chance to perhaps discover more about Victorian social history and the truth about Christmas in the Workhouse, gleaned from newspaper and historical records of the time.

“Be rewarded for your toil with mince pies and mulled wine, evoking the sights, sounds and smells of Christmas evoking times gone by. Please just turn up.”

The decorating will help prepare the Workhouse for two very special Christmas events:

On Saturday December 3, 11am-4pm visitors can enjoy a Dickensian Christmas at the Courthouse Museum complete with festive trial. Visitors can take part in determining if the defendant is innocent and will get their figgy pudding or is guilty and will face their just desserts.

Then on Saturday December 10, 11am-4pm, the popular annual Christmas at the Workhouse will be held.

The treat is a chance to meet the many characters who inhabited the workhouse from the wealthy guardian handing out festive fruits to the inmates themselves, hoping for the best of good cheer.

There will also be craft activities, games, treats and trails, for all the family. Entry is £2 per person.