Harsh lessons
for the poor

Bob Goodier, a retired policeman now a volunteer at the  Ripon Police and Prison museum

Bob Goodier, a retired policeman now a volunteer at the Ripon Police and Prison museum

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The complex of buildings in St Marygate was the House of Correction for Vagrants between 1686 and 1816 before it became the Liberty Prison up until 1878.

It was then used as a police station from 1887 to 1956 before the museum first opened in 1984.

Bobbies on bikes from the East Riding Costabulary, 1910

Bobbies on bikes from the East Riding Costabulary, 1910

The museum is housed in a building which formed part of the former House of Correction and Liberty Gaol.

Houses of Correction were places where the “undeserving poor”, including vagrants and beggars, were set to hard labour. Charges included prostitution, petty theft, and “loose, idle and disorderly conduct”. One magistrate sent three youths to the house of correction for singing.

Bobbies on bikes from the East Riding Costabulary, 1910

Bobbies on bikes from the East Riding Costabulary, 1910

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