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  • VistEngland VAQAS



Health Choices

Health Choices


In Victorian times there was a cure for everything – at least, that’s what many of the quacks and chemists of the time claimed!

This exhibition explores the choices on offer in 1842 and shows how real cures were rare at that time.

Treatment depended on how much money people had, but even expensive remedies could be ineffective or harmful. People saw little difference between qualified doctors and ‘quacks’, and medicines were made by chemists and druggists as well as doctors. Millions of people who could not afford to see a doctor took ‘patent’ medicines made by private companies who spent huge sums advertising their ability to cure anything.

Wealthier people kept personal medicine chests, such as the one on display that belonged to Prince Albert. Doctors would also prescribe strong laxatives or purges to treat various illnesses, as well as treatments such as drinking or bathing in sea water.

This fascinating exhibition invites visitors to imagine what it must have been like to be ill in Victorian times and the choice of treatments available.

Find out if you would have made the right decisions!

Baby changing facilitiesCoach parties acceptedCredit cards accepted (no fee)Disabled accessDisabled toiletsEducation/study areaFacilities for groupsFacilities for educational visitsGift shopOn-site cateringPicnic siteWheelchairs availableAccepts groupsFacilities for conferencingFacilities for corporate hospitality



    Judith Knox

    0113 244 4343


    Near St James's Hospital,
    141 Beckett Street,
    LS9 7LN



    See location of Thackray Medical Museum on Google mapsSee location on Google maps

    Map reference: SE 318348  Lat: 53.80855 Long: -1.51817

    By Road:
    Leave M1 at jct 43, then M621 to jct 4. Follow signs for Harrogate and St James Hospital over River Aire at Crown Point Bridge. Get into right-hand lane. At jct go straight on (signed St James' Hospital) under bridge to major jct.

    By Public Transport:
    Taxi or buses (take bus routed to St James' Hospital), City centre buses include 16, 42, 50, 50A and 49 Get off the bus at the hospital and the museum entrance is next door.

    Parking: with charge

    Accessible by Public Transport: 2 miles from Leeds station


    • Baby changing facilitiesBaby changing facilities
    • Coach parties acceptedCoach parties accepted
    • Credit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (no fee)
    • Disabled accessDisabled access
    • Disabled toiletsDisabled toilets
    • Education/study areaEducation/study area
    • Facilities for groupsFacilities for groups
    • Facilities for educational visitsFacilities for educational visits
    • Gift shopGift shop
    • On-site cateringOn-site catering
    • Picnic sitePicnic site
    • Wheelchairs availableWheelchairs available
    • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
    • Facilities for conferencingFacilities for conferencing
    • Facilities for corporate hospitalityFacilities for corporate hospitality