Welcome to the Toxic Tower

Where is Sick to Death

Sick to Death is set inside two towers upon the ancient walls of Chester. It is a short walking distance from the city centre and a visit to Sick to Death will mean a meander along the most complete medieval walls in Britain.

What is in there

Water Tower, Ground Floor

The 16th and 17th centuries saw Plague Doctors share the streets of Chester with soldiers on either side of the civil war. Disease and disaster was seen as punishment from god, but at the same time more enlightened minds were discovering, dissecting and daring to question what we knew about how the body worked.

The lower floor of Sick to Death explores this time period, with plague doctors, gruesome dissected bodies and eye-watering surgery tools alongside things to touch, sniff, wear and interact with. Not for the faint-hearted!

Water Tower, Upper Floor

The top of the tower was built by master masons in the 14th century – but how did these workmen stay fit and healthy? Discover some fascinating facts about the medieval diet, check out why medieval doctors collected bottles of wee, and why the theory of the Four Humours was no laughing matter. Finally, step inside the Pathology Pod to learn how science can shed new light on the past, and come face to face with the skeleton of a medieval woman, whose bones tell a unique story of health and healing in 14th century Chester.

Bonewaldesthorne’s Tower

This wall tower is documented since 1249-61 and is now the entrance to the Sick to Death attraction. On the ground floor is our reception and small shop, but if you can manage some steep stairs a surprise awaits in the form of a fully restored Camera Obscura installed in 1838. The world Camera Obscura means ‘dark room’ in Latin and is an example in early optic technology. This particular Camera Obscura offers a panoramic view of the city of Chester.

The most revolting, disgusting thing I've ever seen? I love it!
Jack, 8