North Yorkshire County Record Office will throw open its doors to the public as part of Museums at Night, the UK’s festival for the culturally curious, on Thursday 17 May.
The festival aims to inspire new visitors to discover the fascinating heritage on their doorstep.
The County Record Office’s Archives at Dusk is a creative event and a highlight of the record office year, a light-hearted interactive evening that offers a rare opportunity to see behind the scenes and to discover North Yorkshire’s amazing historic records housed within the archive.
County Councillor Greg White, executive member for customer engagement, said: “This is the eighth year of Archives at Dusk and this time we are looking at some of the archive’s earliest documents from the medieval and early modern periods, two of the most exciting, turbulent and transformative eras in history.
“Visitors can learn what these documents reveal about life in North Yorkshire for the nobility, religious communities and ordinary people through looking at castles and abbeys, domestic life, music, hunting, law making, lost villages, crafts and calligraphy.”
Handlers from the North Yorkshire Moors Birds of Prey centre will help to bring the archive alive with a display of falcons commonly used for hunting in medieval times. They will expand on amazing references found in the 1600 notebook of landowner Richard Cholmeley of Brandsby, reflecting his passion for the care, training and handling of birds of prey.
The evening will also provide a rare opportunity to view the Whitby Abbot’s Book. This fascinating record of the Abbey was begun in the 12th century and continued until the early 16th century. Susan Harrison from English Heritage will attend to talk about the newly planned visitor centre for Whitby Abbey to which the Abbot’s Book will be loaned for display later this year.
Archives at Dusk takes place on Thursday 17 May, from 6pm to 8.30pm at North Yorkshire County Record Office in Malpas Road, Northallerton, DL7 8TB. Admission is free and there will be refreshments.