Junior activities at the Village Museum c1970

The History of the Museum

Or how it all began

Ruddington Village Museum was opened in 1968 to display the collection of artefacts put together by founder Dorothy Shrimpton, but really our history started long before that. Dorothy had been building up her collection for around a decade before the museum was founded, storing items she had bought or been given, as well as those she had found through other means – sometimes even by digging through skips!

The original Ruddington Village Museum was housed across two floors in a wing of The Hermitage, a building owned by St Peter’s Church. There were four main rooms, including the popular Victorian Room, and a special exhibition room with changing displays. However, the space was very limited, and the building was not an ideal location for a village museum, which made it almost inevitable that the museum would eventually find a new home.

In the late 1970s, the museum’s second site was opened at St Peter’s Rooms, and for the next decade the two sites of the museum were run in tandem by Dorothy Shrimpton and Margaret Lawson.

In the late 1980s the Hermitage site was closed for good, resulting in a rather over-full single site for Ruddington Village Museum. It was then that the museum shifted its approach to a more commercially-themed display system, coinciding with the donation of our marvellous 40-year-old Fish and Chip Shop fittings.

The museum has remained popular, with the open displays invoking nostalgia in our older visitors, and wonder in our younger guests.

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