Leicester is privileged to have one of the best-preserved timber framed halls in the country dating back 600 years. The Guildhall is a historic building and the oldest building still in use in the city. It was Leicester’s first police station and between 1876 and the 1900’s and saw many unsavoury characters pass through its doors. The Great Hall itself was built in about 1390 as a meeting place for the Guild of Corpus Christi (a small but powerful group of businessmen and gentry) and it’s also believed that Shakespeare performed here during Tudor times. Today, the Guildhall is best known as an excellent performance venue, attracting acts from across the country. It’s also known as a museum where visitors can step back in time and come face to face with Crankie Gemmie and Emma Smith, two of Leicester’s notorious pick-pockets who can be found lurking in the Victorian police cells. The museum is also home to the Medieval Leicester galleries and The White Rose Cafe.

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