A visit to Richmond Castle in North Yorkshire

Richmond Castle is one of the oldest Norman fortresses in Britain.

The majority of the castle is in ruins but the keep, which is over 30 metres (100 feet) high has been preserved and offers fantastic views over the market town of Richmond in North Yorkshire and the surrounding Yorkshire Dales.

The 30 foot keep of Richmond Castle
Walking around the castle ruins
Richmond Castle with stunning views of the Yorkshire Dales

There is an interactive display at the entrance to the castle which charts the history of the fortress. Probably begun in the 1070s by Alan Rufus, who had fought at the Battle of Hastings, the castle was expanded in the 12th century when the keep was added. By 1540 the castle was derelict.

During the First World War, it was used to imprison conscientious objectors and there was a very interesting exhibition telling their stories.

It was a lovely day and it was interesting to walk around the remains of the castle and imagine what it must have looked like. There are great views over the Yorkshire Dales and the contemporary Cockpit Garden offered a peaceful oasis of topiary, grasses and herbaceous borders designed to reflect the castle’s history and architecture.

Admission is £6.50 for adults and £3.90 children. For more information, visit https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/richmond-castle/

After our visit, we went for lunch in the market town of Richmond. We browsed around a local arts and craft market and enjoyed walking around the cobbled marketplace and looking at the Georgian architecture.

The market town of Richmond (from the castle)

The Victorian railway station near the river is well worth a visit. It has been converted into a chic art gallery and exhibition space with a café, bar and cinema, as well as a variety of independently owned businesses. The ice cream from Archer’s is highly recommended!


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