The oil painting of The Judges’ Lodgings in Lancaster dates from the early 19th century (artist unknown). It is on loan by Lancaster City Council to the Judges’ Lodgings Museum where it is currently displayed in the new Welcome Gallery. The funds required to conserve the painting and its frame were raised entirely by the Friends through their Christmas appeal of 2019. The removal of centuries of nicotine and other grime has revealed the beauty of this delightful artwork and piece of local history.
The painting shows the Grade 1 listed townhouse (which is now home to the museum) at around the time the building was acquired by the county magistrates to serve as lodgings for itinerant Assize Judges. It also captures the famous Gillows Cabinet Makers workshops and warehouses and the house of Richard Gillow, son of Robert Gillow, and powerhouse behind the famous firm which had its origins in the city of Lancaster.
The life in and around these buildings is vividly captured, in detail which had been obscured until the recent conservation work.
It is hoped that the painting and the new Welcome Gallery will help to draw visitors back to the museum.
The Friends have now commissioned prints and cards of the painting for sale to the public to raise further funds for the museum. Both are now available from the Judges’ Lodgings Shop as an unframed print, A3 size, at £4.99, and as a Christmas card, £2.25 each or £5 for a pack of 3.
Meet new people, have fun, share your knowledge, take on a challenge… get involved with us at Lancaster Judges’ Lodgings.