Robin Hood

Jo’s Monday walk : Nottingham Castle

Just what you'd expect from the entrance to a castle

Just what you’d expect from the entrance to an ancient castle

We’re not going to do too much walking in Nottingham this week.  Up to the castle to check out the view, of course, but after that I might treat you to a half in ‘Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem’. It’s an interesting old place!

I know Nottingham quite well, because it’s my daughter’s home, but it’s years since I’ve been to the castle.  As in many parts of the country this year, there was a war-related exhibition- ‘Trent to Trenches’.  But first, we must climb up to the castle.  It’s not too steep and we can go slowly through the gardens, or even sit on a bench for a while.

Naturally, Robin's hanging out there!

Naturally, Robin’s hanging out there!

Once you reach Castle Rock, there’s a large viewing terrace with patio tables and chairs.  Another invitation to linger, with perhaps a pot of coffee and croissants.

The day I was there, we were constantly accosted by a swarm of ladybirds!  I have never seen the like.  Red and yellow ones, both, were on the tables and thronging the doorway to the museum.  I didn’t manage a photo because I was too busy rescuing them and guiding them on a better flight path.  I can only surmise the warm weather had brought them out to play.

The view from Castle Rock

The view from Castle Rock

The views are wide ranging

The views are expansive

Overlooking 'Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem' below.

Overlooking ‘Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem’ below.

Time for a little history.  Nottingham Castle sits on a natural promontory, known as Castle Rock, with cliffs up to 40 metres high.  Back in the Middle Ages it was a major fortress and royal residence.  As all good castles are, it was strategically located, near to a crossing of the River Trent. Close to the royal hunting grounds at Tideswell and Sherwood, it once even had its own deer park.  Whilst Richard the Lionheart was away on his Third Crusade, it is thought that the castle was left derelict ,and was occupied by the Sheriff of Nottingham.  In the legends of Robin Hood, the castle often features in showdowns between the Sheriff and this popular outlaw.

Sadly the castle went into decline, and was largely demolished in 1649.  A mansion was built on the site, but this was burnt out by rioters in 1831.  The story of this and much of the castle’s intriguing history is told in the Castle Museum, opened in 1878- the first municipal art gallery in the UK outside of London.  Just before we step inside, let’s admire the elegant pebble mosaics set into the courtyard.



I don’t intend to linger too long in the museum.  We each have our own pace and interests.  Let me just give you a small sample of what you might find inside.


Several galleries were given over to the exhibition, documenting life in Nottinghamshire during the wars.  Even in black and white I found many of the images harrowing, and moved swiftly downstairs to learn of the castle’s history.  I won’t spoil it for you by giving away too many details but it is an atmospheric space, and a story well told.

You must be about ready for that half I promised you?  We’ll wander down the hill, past the place that was once a thriving Lace Market.  ‘Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem‘, dating back to 1189, must be one of the most unusual pubs I’ve ever been in.  It is set into the cliff face and is famous for its caves.  The rooms are unusual shapes, some with holes in the ceiling.  There was once a brewery in the lower caverns and there’s a route from there up into Nottingham Castle.  You can actually book a tour of the cellars, which are part of Nottingham’s extensive cave network. Affectionately known as ‘The Trip’, the name derives from a ‘trip’, meaning a stop or resting place on a journey.

The former Lace Market

The former Lace Market

But look!  A friendly face.  Cheers, Lisa!

But look! A friendly face. Cheers, Lisa!

As always, I have included links for those who would like more information, or might be near enough to visit.  I hope you enjoyed meandering around Nottingham Castle with me.  Not too strenuous, was it?

walking logo

I’m ready to put the kettle on now and enjoy the great contributions I’ve received to Jo’s Monday walk this week.  If you have a walk you’d like to share, do please join in.  For details, just click on the link or on my logo.  Many thanks to all my walkers this week.

Firstly, Noe takes us back to South Sulawesi.  The scenery is quite amazing!  :

West coast of Gusung Island 2

And for something completely different, how about Glasgow Necropolis, with Violet Sky  :

City of the Dead

Amy has saved us some delicious remnants of Autumn foliage  :

Lost Maples

While Drake is busy, just being himself, in Liverpool  :

Walking Sculptures

And, all the way from Australia, we have Jude joining us again.  A bit special!  :

A walk in the Blue Mountains

That’s it till next Monday.  Have a great week and happy walking to you all!

Six Word Saturday

 Donkey jacket,

woods and

Robin Hood!

What a week!  One minute it was cold enough for a donkey jacket, the next I was sweltering on the beach at magnificent Robin Hood’s Bay on the North Yorkshire coast.  I hadn’t been there for many years so it was a rare treat to see it in all it’s Spring finery.

Weatherwise we’ve had everything in between too, but clambering through the woods in the good company of my rambling friends was a highlight.

What’s the Robin Hood connection, I asked myself?  Apparently it’s pirate related.  No surprise that, for this neck of the woods.  Seems he encountered French pirates pillaging the village, captured them and returned the loot to the villagers.  It’s just a legend of course, but it seems to’ve stuck.

More happy wanderings next week on  You’re welcome to join me, or indeed to join in yourself.  Just follow the link or click on the header.