Shire Hall will be hosting ‘Wicked Wessex’, the latest Objects On Tour by the Wessex Museums Partnership, in lieu of Dorset County Museum.

Each of the Wessex Museums Partners have chosen an object that explores the term ‘Wicked Wessex’. Pop in to see one of these four grisly objects, which will rotate around the four locations.

Witches in Wessex
Scold’s bridle (The Salisbury Museum)
20 April – 6 July 2019

A scold’s bridle, or witch’s bridle, was used to punish people who were suspected of witchcraft. It was placed over the victim’s head, so they couldn’t speak, or more importantly, curse anyone!

This is one of the horrible punishments used during the 17th century witch trials that took place not just in Wessex, but across the whole of Europe. Some witches faced the stocks or ducking stool, others were hanged.

Wessex Museums Partnership comprises Dorset County Museum, Poole Museum Service, The Salisbury Museum and Wiltshire Museum.