Ribchester Roman Museum

Riverside, Ribchester, PR3 3XS

Ribchester is famous for one of Lancashire’s centres of Roman antiquity in the Ribble Valley. In fact, there is now a revamped and extended museum. Indeed, this contains the most interesting objects from the 1980s excavation in neighbouring St Wilfrid’s graveyard were put on show.

Ribchester Roman Museum contains many artefacts charting the history of this beautiful and historic part of Lancashire, from neolithic to Roman times and beyond.

A short walk away, you can find the Ribchester Roman bath House. The bath-house at Ribchester (known to the Romans as Bremetennacum) was built in about AD 100. It continued in use for about 200 years. It was designed to serve the needs of the soldiers garrisoned in the nearby fort and later for the local civilian population. However, it was built outside the walls of the fort because of the ever-present risk of fire from the furnaces used to heat the various rooms.

Here visitors would enjoy time spent bathing in hot pools and sweating in steam rooms in order to open the pores and cleanse the skin. Attendants would scrape the sweat, dirt and grime from their bodies before they passed into cooler rooms, and finally a cold-plunge bath. This sealed the pores on their clean and refreshed skin.