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    Shire Hall Dorset

    High West Street, Dorchester, Dorset DT1 1UZ

    Shire Hall Dorset: Historic Courthouse Museum.

    Opening in March 2018, Shire Hall will become a new historic courthouse museum, with a focus on justice, which will encompass many aspects of past and present law, politics, citizenship and history using the story of the building and the people whose lives were connected to it. Visitors will explore the incredibly atmospheric, original cells and courtroom where the Tolpuddle Martyrs were tried and Thomas Hardy served as a Magistrate. The Grand Jury Room space will host a changing programme of themed exhibitions.

    Shire Hall will deliver a high quality comprehensive learning programme of visit sessions, activities and resources from Early Years to Post-16 on topics including:

    Crime & Punishment.
    The Tolpuddle Martyrs.
    Justice in the Balance: real case studies from the archives.
    Victorian Shire Hall.
    Shire Hall & Local History.
    Law & Justice.
    Citizenship & PSHE.
    Specific exhibition based sessions.
    Bespoke sessions.

    With activities such as:

    Mock trials, debates and activities in the courtroom and cells.
    Tours of the building including learning trails.
    Building Detective investigations.
    Object handling
    Creative activities including literacy, numeracy and the arts.
    Museum/Heritage Centre
    Shire Hall Dorset:
    • Pupil Ages:
    • 3-5 (KS0), 
    • 5-7 (KS1), 
    • 7-11 (KS2), 
    • 11-14 (KS3), 
    • 14-16 (KS4), 
    • 16-19 (KS5), 
    • 19+
    • Facilities:
    • Toilets, 
    • Gift Shop, 
    • Cafe, 
    • Dining Area, 
    • Disabled Access

    Map Location


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    High West Street, Dorchester, Dorset DT1 1UZ
    01305 252405

    Contact person

    Anne Brown
    01305 252405

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