Free fun! Some of York’s favourite attractions are opening for nothing this weekend

Dinosaurs - impressive, but not quite as big as we've been led to believe. Photographs: Mike Cowling
22 Jun 2016 @ 8.31 pm
| Entertainment, Family
York Museums’ Trust Open Weekend

Various locations

June 25-26

Free with York Card, York University student card or council tax bill proving residence (free on Jun 25 for British forces personnel and veterans)

More info

Vikings, fossils and crotchless pantaloons – all this and more can be yours for free as part of York Museums’ Trust open weekend.

Residents can enjoy a wild assortment of history and art at York Art Gallery, Yorkshire Museum, York St Mary’s and York Castle Museum – without parting with a penny.

According to chief executive Reyahn King it’s a chance for the “people of the city to see some of the best art and culture in the country for free”.

Here’s what’s on (and did we mention it’s free?).

York Art Gallery

Assistant curator of art Lorna Hogger with The NCO Pilot by William Orpen. © IWM
Assistant curator of art Lorna Hogger with The NCO Pilot by William Orpen. © IWM
The Truth & Memory Exhibition features some of the most iconic images to emerge from the First World War, many created by those who served on the front lines, showing the fragmented tragedy of soldiers, the trenches, factories and the war-torn landscape.

York Castle Museum

Breaking the internet with a bustle and a nice cup of tea (beat that Kim Kardashian)
Breaking the internet with a bustle and a nice cup of tea (beat that Kim Kardashian)
Punks, perms and pantaloons are all in the wardrobe of Shaping the Body, an intriguing exhibition focusing on how body shapes have changed in the last 500 years through diet, fashion and lifestyle.

This display takes visitors on a whirlwind tour of bodies through the ages, from the Victorian hour glass to Kim Kardashian’s curves.

Yorkshire Museum

There's fun for all the family at Yorkshire Museum. Just remember to do a head-count on your way out
There’s fun for all the family at Yorkshire Museum. Just remember to do a head-count on your way out
Crystals from Beneath showcases the best of the best from the museum’s mineral collection. Granted, this doesn’t sound massively exciting, but the crystals, collected for centuries, are actually strikingly beautiful.

If you’re a collector or budding geologist, you can bring along your own rocks and fossil finds to show the experts.

Members of Yorkshire Geological Society will be on hand to help identify your finds and provide fun and friendly information about local geology.

York St Mary’s

A friendly Viking prepares to welcome residents. Photograph © Rigel on Flickr
A friendly Viking prepares to welcome residents. Photograph © Rigel on Flickr
Vikings from the Jorvik Museum, still recovering from flood damage and due to reopen next year, will be rampaging around next door at York St Mary’s (we’re sure they’ll leave it as tidy as they found it).

There’s a new Jorvik exhibition opening at St Mary’s on Saturday (June 25). You can come face to bearded-face with Vikings, get a close look at a replica ship and see precious artefacts from the era.