CaP Collection of the Month

March 2023: Lancashire Police Museum

The exterior of Lancashire Castle and prison buildings
The exterior of the prison buildings

Lancashire Police Museum is housed in the former Pentonville-style male penitentiary wing of Lancaster Castle Prison. This is part of the larger and formidable medieval Lancaster Castle complex. The museum was opened in 2022 with Lancashire Constabulary, the Crime Commissioner for Lancashire and the Duchy of Lancaster acting in partnership.  The Duchy of Lancaster own Lancaster Castle. It features sixteen small exhibition areas housed within the former prison cells leading off the central galleries, reflecting the history of the force from 1839 to the current day.

Themes of the cells cover careers, uniforms, gallantry, operations, the introduction of women into the Constabulary, police training, forensic development – including how some infamous local cases were solved – and an overview of some of the different police departments including the mounted branch, dog unit, underwater search unit and firearms. There is also a mock custody suite with interactive exhibits and an area dedicated to modern day policing with information about opportunities to join the police.

A museum cell exhibit dedicated to early policing
Cell No 9 dedicated to remembrance
The walls of the museum feature quotes from serving police officers

One of the museum’s most popular exhibits is a cell dedicated to the double murders carried out by Dr Buck Ruxton in 1935. Here the bathroom from Dr Ruxton’s house in Lancaster has been replicated in order to display the original bath removed from the crime scene.

Dr Buck Ruxton display

Find out more about visiting Lancashire Police Museum here.

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