The Arctic Corsair is Hull’s last surviving sidewinder trawler, a type of ship that formed the backbone of the city’s deep sea fishing fleet. She was built in 1960, at Cook, Welton & Gemmell in Beverley, and was the second diesel-engined trawler built for the Boyd Line, the first being the Arctic Cavalier which was launched the previous month. She was designed for the harsh conditions encountered in the Icelandic grounds, having a rivetted rather than welded hull. In September 1967 she was holed on her starboard side in a collision off the coast of Scotland with the Irish collier Olive in thick fog. Attempting to reach harbour in Wick she was beached in Sinclair Bay but eventually repaired and refloated. In 1973, the Arctic Corsair broke the world record for landing of cod and haddock from the White Sea. On 30 April 1976 during the cod wars, she rammed the offshore patrol vessel ICGV Odin in the stern, after Odin had made three attempts to cut the Corsair's trawl warps. The skipper, Charles Pitts, said that Icelandic seamen were becoming "more ambitious and dangerous in their tactics". With his ship holed below the waterline, and patched up temporarily by the Royal Navy, Pitts decided to head for home for permanent repairs. Arctic Corsair was out of action for several months. In 1978 she was converted for midwater trawling, and in 1981 laid up at Hull. In 1985 she was taken out of retirement and reconverted for normal fishing. She was renamed Arctic Cavalier in 1988.
There are five galleries at the Streetlife Museum - The Bicycle Gallery explores the history and development of the bicycle and its links to Hull’s history. It has an excellent collection of early bicycles including an 1818 Hobby Horse. The Carriage Gallery has one of the finest carriage collections in public ownership in Britain. Make sure you enjoy the smells of the stable as you step from the Hull-York Mail Coach ride. The Motor Car Gallery takes you to the 1900 Motor Show, with rare veteran motor cars dating from 1897 onwards. The Streetscene Gallery is where you find yourself on a busy street of reconstructed shops. There is a cycle shop, a Yorkshire chemist shop and a Hull Co-operative shop from the 1930s. The Railway Gallery is a reconstructed 1930s goods shed containing several items of interest, including the Cottingham North signal box, transported brick-by-brick from its original location and re-assembled here. The Joseph Rank Gallery looks at the life, career and legacy of Joseph Rank, the industrial revolution in flour milling and Hull’s ideal location as the catalyst for this to happen. On display are replicas of Joseph Rank’s freedom of the city scroll and the silver commemorative windmill commissioned to house it. You’ll also find an interactive feature which shows how roller milling produces flour.
There are seven galleries at Wilberforce House - The History of the Building gallery explores the fascinating history of Wilberforce House, first built in the 1660s for Hugh Lister. The William Wilberforce galleries focus on Hull’s most famous son, following his life and political career, with original artefacts, costume and documents. The West African galleries upstairs explore the rich cultural traditions of specific African societies, looking at religion, ceremonies, music and adornment. The Capture and the Middle Passage galleries cover the horrific reality of being kidnapped and transported across the Atlantic in appalling and often lethal conditions. The Plantation Life galleries explore what life was like for enslaved Africans when they were sold to work on plantations in the Caribbean and the Americas. It looks at working conditions, health, punishment and death rates as well as how plantation workers rebelled and resisted slavery in multiple ways. The Abolition galleries look at the campaigns to abolish the slave trade and slavery, and what happened after emancipation was achieved. The gallery includes the famous Brooke’s slave ship model used by Wilberforce in the Houses of Parliament. The Contemporary Slavery galleries shows slavery today and the work to try and stop it. This gallery also focuses on life in West Africa today and links in with Hull’s twin city of Freetown, Sierra Leone.
Artic Corsair is only available by tour. There are no toilet facilities and it is not wheelchair accessible. Access to the Streetlife Museum is via the main entrance. A wheelchair accessible lift to the first floor is available. There are also ramps over some of the train tracks inside the museum. Guide dogs are welcome. Please notify the booking office at the time of booking. Wheelchair access to Wilberforce House is via the main entrance. The ground floor and majority of the first floor are fully accessible. Three galleries on the first floor are not accessible via the lift. In addition a number of thresholds are too narrow for larger electric wheelchairs. Audio tours can be downloaded prior to your visit. Assistance dogs are welcome, no need to book - just turn up.
Location : Hull Culture & Leisure, High Street, Hull HU1 1PS
Transport: Hull (National Rail) then bus. Bus Routes : 4, 11, 12, 13, 16, 78, 79 and 80 stop nearby.
Opening Times - Artic Corsair : Wednesday & Saturday 10:00 to 16:30; Sunday & Bank Holidays 13:00 to 16:30.
Opening Times - Streetlife : Monday to Saturday - 10:00 to 17:00; Sunday - 13:30 to 16:30.
Opening Times - Wilberforce House : Monday to Saturday - 10:00 to 17:00; Sunday - 13:30 to 16:30.
Tickets : Free.
Tel: 01482 300 300