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Helmsley Arts Centre

Helmsley’s Old Meeting House was built as a venue for Quaker meetings in 1812, but Quaker numbers in the town gradually diminished and in the 1840s the building was leased to the Primitive Methodists — who used it regularly until 1980, when it became disused. It was purchased from the Quakers in 1984 by the newly-formed Old Meeting House Trust, initially with a view to creating a chamber music venue as the home of the Helmsley Festival, the forerunner of the present Ryedale Festival.

Helmsley Arts Centre is now a thriving performance venue for theatre, music, dance, talks, cinema and live broadcasts, plus exhibitions, classes and a range of creative activities for children. The management of the Arts Centre, initially entirely voluntary, has gradually been professionalised, but the success of the project continues to depend on a large group of volunteer staff and participants, and on the wider support and enthusiasm of our rural community. 

Parking: There is a Pay and Display Car Park in Helmsley Market Square which charges Mon - Sun 9am-18.30pm, It is free of charge outside of these hours. 

Disabled Parking: is available for our customers outside Helmsley Arts Centre, please ring the box office on 01439 771700 to reserve a parking space.