Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle, located in Alnwick, England, has its origins dating back to the Norman period. Since 1309, it has been closely associated with the illustrious Percy family, whose rich history mirrors that of the Castle. The castle has played various roles throughout the centuries, serving as a military outpost, a teaching college, a refuge for evacuees, and even a film set. Today, it remains a family home and an evolving historical site.

The exterior of Alnwick Castle, renowned as one of the finest medieval castles in Britain, was restored by Anthony Salvin in the mid-19th century. The interior boasts lavish state rooms filled with an excellent collection of Italian old masters and sculptures, set within a park landscaped by Capability Brown. The stone figures of soldiers on the battlements, added in the 18th century, are a nod to its military past.

The Percy family's influence on the castle is profound. Henry de Percy purchased the stronghold from the bishop of Durham in 1309, and his descendants fortified and expanded it. Notable family members include Sir Henry Percy, Shakespeare's Hotspur, who played significant roles in English history, including battles against the Scots and rebellions against English monarchs. The direct Percy line ended in 1670, but the title and estate were inherited by Sir Hugh Smithson, who became the Duke of Northumberland in 1766.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, Alnwick Castle underwent significant transformations. Sir Hugh Smithson commissioned Capability Brown to landscape the park and Robert Adam to work on the interior. Anthony Salvin later gave the castle its grandly baronial appearance, with the interior reflecting an Italian Renaissance style. This grandiose design has made the castle a popular filming location, notably for the early Harry Potter films and Downton Abbey.

Alnwick Castle is an award-winning visitor attraction offering a range of activities and events. From dressing up in medieval costumes and practicing archery to participating in Knight Quests and Broomstick Training, there is something for everyone. The castle's state rooms, filled with art and antique furniture, provide a glimpse into its opulent past. The Library, Drawing Room, and Dining Room, each with their unique features, showcase the castle’s rich history and artistic heritage.

Alnwick Castle is easily accessible, located less than a mile off the A1 and well signposted. The nearest railway station is Alnmouth, four miles away, with regular bus and taxi services connecting it to the castle. For those traveling by bus, the X15 and X18 from Newcastle Haymarket Bus Station offer direct routes to Alnwick.

The castle hosts an exciting calendar of activities, including hands-on workshops, theatrical falconry, magic shows, and historical re-enactments. Various dining options are available within the castle grounds, from quick snacks to more lavish meals. The nearby Alnwick Garden and town centre provide additional attractions and amenities, ensuring a memorable visit for all.

Alnwick Castle stands as a testament to England's rich historical and cultural heritage. Its blend of medieval architecture, Renaissance interiors, and significant art collections make it one of the true treasure houses of England. Whether exploring its ancient halls, enjoying its beautifully landscaped grounds, or engaging in its numerous activities, Alnwick Castle offers a unique and enriching experience for every visitor.

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the-haven-popDue to a cancellation
The Haven
is now available on the following dates:
Saturday June 25th for 7 nights
Please get in touch if you’re interested in booking