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Atmospheric Victorian workhouse

Walking up the paupers' path towards The Workhouse it is easy to imagine how the Victorian poor might have felt as they sought refuge here. This austere building, the most complete workhouse in existence, was built in 1824 as a place of last resort for the destitute. Its architecture was influenced by prison design and its harsh regime became a blueprint for workhouses throughout the country. The stories of those who lived and worked here in the 1840s help bring the building to life and prompt reflection on how society has tackled poverty through the centuries.

The Workhouse is now closed for essential conservation work over the winter period. We look forward to welcoming you from Saturday 14 February 2015.

Christmas message

Thank you to all who have visited us this year, we look forward to welcoming you to The Workhouse in 2015. Start planning ahead by taking a look at our exciting range of events.


Workhouse Walkers

Every last Friday of the month

Join our friendly walking group for a free health walk around Southwell. Meet new people and enjoy the last colours of autumn. Find out more

Our collection

From slipper pans to a harmonium, our collection contains a fascinating range of objects. Browse our online collection to delve deeper into Victorian Workhouse items.

Share your thoughts

Keep up-to-date with all the latest news and share your experiences of The Workhouse on our Facebook page. View visitors' photos and add your own to our Flickr group.