National Centre for
Citizenship and the Law

Arts Council England
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Call: 0115 952 0555
Book your Visit

We inspire...

Young People by delivering Law and Justice education at national heritage sites.

We inspire...

Young People by delivering Law and Justice education at national heritage sites.

We inspire...

Young People by delivering Law and Justice education at national heritage sites.

We inspire...

Young People by delivering Law and Justice education at national heritage sites.

Northampton

The Sessions House, Northampton, is a rare surviving example of a 17th century courthouse. Situated at the centre of the town, it was the administrative heart of Northamptonshire for over three hundred years.

A Grade 1 Listed Building, it some fantastic 17th century decorative plasterwork as well as original paintings commissioned for the courtrooms and is considered an important, unique example of a courthouse of the period. It has served the community for over 300 years but still retains its original character and appearance.‘

However, it is as the centre of Northamptonshire’s rich history of crime and punishment that the Sessions House is most remembered. One of the most notorious cases tried there involved two women who were accused of witchcraft. Elinor Shaw and Mary Phillips, both from Oundle, were hanged in 1705 for their offences, the last two
individuals in England to be executed as witches.

Inside the Sessions House there is a new visitor and welcome centre, an 18th Century Crown
Court and a 19th century Civil court.

Beneath the building are basements which were used as cells.

School activities and resources are available but must be teacher-led.

Please contact the Sessions House directly for availability on 01604 367997