Object of the Week: Who was Miss Busby?

Historic portraits that line the walls of nearly all historic houses can seem daunting and anonymous. Some have deep connections with a place whereas others are often bought to make a room even more ‘historic’. But these were real people and piecing together their lives, requiring perseverance and luck, can be revealing. This portrait, painted […]

Opening Update

Our primary concern at York Civic Trust and Fairfax House is ensuring the health and wellbeing of staff, volunteers and visitors in light of the recent situation regarding COVID-19. We have therefore decided to provisionally postpone the official reopening of the museum to 1st May 2020 and reschedule all planned events until August across the […]

Characterising James Gillray: The Life Behind the Satire

James Gillray (1756-1815) is heralded as one of the founding fathers of British satire. Depicting political events and society figures with a penetrating gaze, he was equally feared and revered. The themes he draws upon in his masterful prints remain vitally relevant to modern audiences, just as his work continues to influence and inspire today’s […]

The Georgian Approach to Personal Hygiene

How the upper classes stayed clean and battled body odour in the 18th century Bathing Despite the popularity of spa towns during the Regency Period, it was commonly believed that bathing was unhealthy as soaking in water, and especially hot water, was thought to let disease enter the body. When Georgians did take a bath, […]

CLOSURE: York Residents Weekend 2020

Due to unforeseen circumstances we regretfully announce that we are unable to open Fairfax House as part of the 2020 York Residents Festival. This is due to emergency conservation work required on all of our important historic plasterwork and stucco ceilings. During our usual January closed period, specialist testing – carried out by York Conservation […]