Craven Museum & Gallery is temporarily closed until further notice. Please check the venue's website for the latest details.
Located within the Town Hall on Skipton's High Street, this small museum has an excellent local history collection through which it tells the story of the southern part of the Yorkshire Dales known as Craven.
The museums is home to items of social history, archaeology, art and costume. The exhibition gallery on the ground floor shows a changing programme of exhibitions related to heritage and the arts, and the museum runs workshops, events and family fun days throughout the year.
One highlight of the permanent display is a rare Shakespeare First Folio. In 1623, seven years after William Shakespeare's death, a compilation of 36 of his plays were published together in one volume. No more than 750 copies were printed and today only about 230 survive, with less than 50 in the British Isles. At the time of Shakespeare's death, 18 of his plays, including Macbeth, Twelfth Night and The Tempest, had not reached print and would probably not have survived without the Folio. Craven Museum is one of only four venues in the world to have a First Folio on permanent display; the others are in London, Stratford upon Avon and Washington DC. The Skipton First Folio display includes an audio-visual presentation narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart, and the pages are turned regularly.
The museum's social history collection features items of local farming, lead mining and everyday life in Craven. Objects in the archaeology collection date from the early prehistoric through to the post medieval period, including finds from local caves and a Roman villa.
Further exhibits include highlights from the Roebuck Art Collection. Clement Roebuck bequeathed his personal art collection to the museum in 1988.