Helena Thompson Museum

The Helena Thompson Museum, which is in the Western Lakes in Cumbria, is a small local museum in a fine Georgian house. This museum, which was known as Park End, was the home of Helena Thompson M.B.E., J.P. for over seventy years, and it was her gift to the people of Workington upon her death. The only condition was that it had to be made into a museum for Workington and the surrounding district.

At this museum there are displays of pottery, silver, glass and furniture dating from Georgian, Regency and Victorian times and women’s and children’s dresses and accessories from the 18th to the early 20th century. There is also a section that relates to the social and industrial history of coal mining, shipbuilding and iron and steel making in the town.

There is a model of Workington Hall, the ancient seat of the Curwen family, which was built round a 14th century pele tower. Mary, Queen of Scots, spent her last night of freedom here in May 1568 after fleeing from Scotland across the Solway Firth. The hall stands in the park, a short walk from the museum. It would be advisable to check the opening hours on the Helena Thompson Museum’s website before planning a visit.

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