Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum

In the 1830s life in villages like Tolpuddle was hard and getting worse. Farm workers could not bear yet more cuts to their pay. Some fought back by smashing the new threshing machines but this brought harsh punishments.

In 1834, farm workers in west Dorset formed a trade union. Unions were lawful and growing fast but six leaders of the union were arrested and sentenced to seven years’ transportation for taking an oath of secrecy. A massive protest swept across the country. Thousands of people marched through London and many more organised petitions and protest meetings to demand their freedom.

The Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum tells the harrowing tale of the Martyrs arrest, trial and punishment, leading to the foundation of modern day trade unionism.

Opening Times

Summer Apr-Oct

Closed on Mondays
Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sunday 11am – 5pm
Open Bank Holidays 11am
Admission free

Winter Nov – March

Closed Monday-Wednesday
Thursday – Saturday 10am – 4pm
Sunday 11am – 4pm

Museum closed between Christmas and New Year

Free Admission

Contact Information

You can contact us in the following ways –

By post :

Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum, Dorchester Road, Tolpuddle, Dorset, DT2 7EH

By phone :

+44 (0) 1305 848 237

Click here for further information

“My second visit to Tolpuddle allowed me to see the new museum and shop. It is informative with historic documents and artefacts. The basic story is a reminder of what our predecessors fought for, the right to organise and to ask for a better set of conditions. Any person with an interest in trade unions should visit the village and no visit should leave out the museum.”

Stephen (Liverpool)

“Tells the story of the tolpuddle martyrs ….inspiring and poignant story. Good souvenir shop.”

Dave (London)

“A tribute to pioneers for social justice”.

Barb (Abingdon)