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Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival and Museum

July 15 - July 17

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In the 1830s life in villages like Tolpuddle was hard and getting worse. Farm workers could not bear yet more cuts to their pay. Some fought back by smashing the new threshing machines but this brought harsh punishments.

In 1834, farm workers in west Dorset formed a trade union. Unions were lawful and growing fast but six leaders of the union were arrested and sentenced to seven years’ transportation for taking an oath of secrecy. A massive protest swept across the country. Thousands of people marched through London and many more organised petitions and protest meetings to demand their freedom.


The Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum tells the harrowing tale of the Martyrs’ arrest, trial and punishment, leading to the foundation of modern day trade unionism.

The museum is a modern, informative, and educational exhibition, using interactive touch screen displays new graphic panels telling the story in text and images. The museum sets out the Martyrs’ story in four sections: Before the arrest, The Oath and Betrayal, Transportation, and the Homecoming.

Visit the Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum


Every year in July, thousands of people to enjoy the Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival. It is a weekend of family entertainment, stalls, political debate, comedy, music and a grand procession through the village.

15-17 July 2022

– Join the Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Facebook group

– Subscribe to the Tolpuddle Martyrs Youtube channel

– Get your ticket to the festival at tolpuddlemartyrs.org.uk

Find our more about the annual Festival

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July 15
July 17


Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival group


Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum
Dorchester Rd
Tolpuddle, Dorset DT2 7EH United Kingdom
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