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Whether this is the first time you are considering visiting the historic City of Lincoln, or you are considering a return trip, you may know that this historic city as well as its surrounding countryside is packed full of more attractions than you can possibly see in one day. Situated only 6 miles from the historic City of Lincoln, The Gables Guest House offers guests a comfortable place to stay that is close proximity to all the attractions that this historic city has to offer. One of the many museums which calls this historic city home is the Museum of Lincolnshire Life. Here we discuss the background of this museum as well as some nearby attractions that may be of interest to the museums guests so you can determine if a visit to this history museum is something that you need to schedule into your holiday time in Lincoln.
What is the Museum of Lincolnshire Life?
Long before it was used as a museum, the buildings that now house the museum were once the Victorian barracks for the Royal North Lincoln Militia back in the year 1857. Visitors may be surprised to learn that the Militia during that time was made up of part time volunteer soldiers whose primary purpose was home defence. The barracks was the headquarters for the Royal North Lincoln Militia until 1880. After that time the militia moved to the New Barracks, which later became known as the headquarters for the Lincolnshire Regiment. In 1881 they joined with the Country Regiment later titled as the 3rd Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment.
For a span of about 20 years the site fell into disrepair until 1901 when it was put back in service by another military force. A voluntary cavalry unit, named the Lincolnshire Imperial Yeomanry claimed the barracks as their own and utilized it as their headquarters until 1920. As the years passed by the barracks continued to be used for various forms of military activities until 1963.
The Museum of Lincolnshire Life was then opened on July 29th 1969 by the Lincolnshire Association for the Arts and Heritage. It was run independently by the association until it was transferred to the Lincolnshire County Council in the year 1974.
Things to do at the museum:
Since its inception the museum had been amassing a unique collection of over 250,000 objects relating to the rich history of the City of Lincoln and its surrounding countryside. Its collection showcases and commemorates the life and culture of those that called Lincolnshire home from the 1750s all the way to present day.
Exhibits include, but are not limited to agricultural, commercial, and domestic, as well as industrial examples of life throughout the years. Community life is also well represented and showcases how daily life has changed over the years.
The museum is home to an authentic World War I tank aptly named “Flirt” that was developed by the William Foster & Co, in addition to a variety of interactive galleries dedicated specifically to the Royal Lincolnshire Regiment. These displays have won a variety of esteemed national awards, and there is always a chance that you may be able to learn about a long lost relative that you may have never even known served in the regiment. The museum also has a variety of exhibits that recreate house interiors and shops of a time gone by so guests have a chance to see first hand how life used to be for the generations that came before them. There are also various displays of early farm machinery constructed by local companies such as the Field Marshall tractor that was built by Marshall, Sons & Co. The museum also has an RB4 Ruston-Bucyrus excavator from 1929, and a RB17 of the same manufacturer from 1937.
Guests also have the chance to participate in group quiz sessions to learn more about the area’s history, or they can choose to view one of the many exhibits on display in the museums community gallery. The museum also has a variety of ‘loan boxes’ that they loan out to local schools and organizations which gives participants the chance to touch and discover various objects from times gone by.
The museum also provides guests with a few recommendations on nearby attractions that they may be interested in visiting. Located in close proximity to the museum is the Ellis Mill. The mill is run solely by the volunteer millers of the museum. It dates back to 1798 and was in service till the 1949s when the machinery was removed and the mill fell into disrepair. The mill then went through a restoration in the 1970s and was put back into service in the early 1980s and still fulfills orders for fresh ground flour to this day.
Other local attractions include the Church Farm Museum of Agricultural life which displays examples of 19th and 20th century buildings, farm implements, and machinery as well as information about the Red Poll cattle and Longwool Sheep that were native to the area. The museum is also run by volunteers of the Lincolnshire City Council and is open from Easter through October 31st of each year.
The other attraction is the Gordon Boswell Romany Museum whose displays are dedicated to the life’s work of Gordon Boswell. His collection includes various artifacts and photographs as well as many examples of the characteristic wagon. The museum is open Friday through Sunday, and on bank holidays from Easter till the end of October each year.
Hours of operation and admission fees:
Hours of operation for the Museum of Lincolnshire Life is from 10AM to 4PM Monday through Sunday in the months of April through September. Hours in the months of October through March are also 10AM to 4PM on Monday through Saturday. Last admission is accepted at 3:30PM any time of year. There is no admission fee to enter the museum.
Hours of operation for the mill are Saturday and Sunday in the months of April through September from 2PM to 5PM, and Sunday only in the months of October through April with hours from 2PM to dusk. Admission to the mill is free as well.
This is just a brief overview of all the exhibits that the Museum of Lincolnshire Life has to offer. With a plethora of exhibits designed to demonstrate how life has changed over the years, the experiences you have at the museum are sure to leave you with a different outlook of how tough life may have been for those that came before us.