THE Folly, Settle’s ‘nationally significant’ grade one listed building, is calling for volunteers to help its museum stay open to visitors this summer.

The Museum of North Craven Life, housed in The Folly, tells the story of North Craven from pre-history through to modern times, focusing on how people have lived and worked in the area for centuries.

The museum was founded in 1977 for Queen Elizabeth’s silver jubilee and moved into The Folly in 2001, when it was officially reopened by HRH Prince Charles. It has recently been recognised as being of national significance by Arts Council England. It is the only grade one listed building in Settle and is one of the only grade one listed houses open to the public across the Yorkshire Dales.

The museum now combines the history of North Craven with the history of The Folly itself, and the building of the Settle-Carlisle Railway.

It also hosts changing art and history exhibitions, featuring the work of local artists. It is one of the only venues in North Craven where artwork and exhibitions can be hosted for free, providing a valuable opportunity for local organisations.

This year, The Folly is hosting exhibitions of artwork by Celia King and the arts collective Craven Arts, and an exhibition looking back on the foot and mouth epidemic of 2001. In the autumn, the museum will host an exhibition on Yorkshire peat and the climate crisis, produced in collaboration with the Yorkshire Peat Partnership, the All Our Land project, and Action Climate Emergency (ACE) Settle.

Heather Lane, the museum's honorary curator, said: “We are looking for people to join our volunteer team to help us recover from the effects of the pandemic. We offer lots of training, so joining us can provide valuable work experience. We tell the story of North Craven in a way that is engaging for everyone, whether they’re three or 93. We hold events and children’s activities, along with tours and trails. There’s something for everyone at The Folly.”

Caitlin Greenwood, heritage development officer, added: “Volunteers are the backbone of everything we do here at The Folly, and we simply couldn’t open to the public without them. Anyone can volunteer, whether they’re a young person looking for work experience, a mum or dad looking for something to do while the kids are at school, or a retired person wanting to keep active in the community. We’re a really friendly team and we love meeting new volunteers.”

Caroline Rosier, a trustee and leader of the volunteer welcome team, said: “It’s so enjoyable meeting people from all over the world and talking to them about The Folly and its history. Volunteers also get some special perks, including group visits to other museums and attractions, a free tea or coffee while volunteering, and a discount in the shop and café.”

The museum is holding an open afternoon for potential volunteers on Thursday, July 7. More details can be found online at, or contact The Folly directly.