Who Cares? It’s about people not process

A washing line of clothes and pram are assembled by a woman as part of an art exhibition.

At The Workhouse, we want to add value to your visit by activating imaginations and inviting you to share your experiences and ideas for the future. These will be reflected in our activities and the stories we present.

" Each year The Workhouse will ask how poverty is affecting us - looking at the people and not just the process of how society deals with homelessness in the past, present and future. "
- Jan Overfield-Shaw, Creative and Community Officer at The Workhouse.

In 2019 The Workhouse is focusing on issues relating to mental health with a themed programme of events.

5 July – 31 October: South Essex College Costume Exhibition - 'Nurses in The Workhouse'

South Essex first year costume design students will be recreating 6 costumes which are based on nurses’ uniforms from 1891- 1940. The exhibition will include archival evidence and stories of nurses from The Workhouse. You can follow the students' work on Instagram - @costumeconstructionbasec

5 July – 31 October: The Dolls' House Project

The Workhouse is again joining forces with young parents from homeless housing project Newark Emmaus Trust, along with artist and academic Dr Natalie Jones from Warwick University, to create an artistic installation around the contemporary issues of being young, a parent and homeless.

29 July - 3 November: Trust New Art at The Workhouse

For 2019, in conjunction with the National Trust programme, The Workhouse has partnered with the Arts Council, Nottingham County Council, MenCap Nottinghamshire and Reach UK to develop a temporary contemporary art commission with young people and adults.

Visitors will have a chance to see the work in progress of this new art piece which is lead by creative fellow Morgan Tipping and driven through the lens of people with learning difficulties.

8 - 22 September: The Workhouse Poetry Festival

The theme of the annual Workhouse Poetry Festival is 'Care and Creativity.' It will include a flavour of the garden and natural world with opportunities to hear poetry as spoken word and take part in special sensorium activities.

Visitors can follow a poetry trail throughout the house and garden as well as take part in workshops led by writers and lecturers from Loughborough University.

Programme for Poetry Festival Autumn 2019

  • 11 and 18 September – Kicking off the performance days, there will be an opportunity for visitors to select poems and nominate an area within The Workhouse where they will be read by Michelle and Tamara Jankowska from Derby University.
  • 13 September 12:30-2:30pm - ‘The Voice of Thomas Becher’ Step back in time and join Reverend John T. Becher, founder of The Workhouse, as he performs poems inspired by The Workhouse.
  • 14 September, 2pm - The Workhouse is hosting Henry Normal, poet, writer and broadcaster who will perform his poetry. This event is in collaboration with Flower Pod from Reach Learning Disability UK collective. 
  • 22 September 12pm - The festival closes with a session exploring Irish poetry connected with the theme this year of care and creativity. This will be run Dr Deirdre O'Byrne from Loughborough University, who has academic expertise in Irish Literature and Storytelling. 
  • 22 September, 2pm - Poet Jacqueline Gabbitas will be giving a reading of her poetry and reflecting on her family connections to The Workhouse. Jacqueline is a descendant of the famous Worksop chair makers, Gabbitas - producer of the well-known Windsor Chairs which were used in workhouses around the country in the 1840s. This particular style of chair is currently displayed within The Workhouse building.

(Programme may be subject to change as a result of circumstances outside the National Trust’ control)

For more details on these and other events visit our What’s on page.