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Bolton Castle

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Bolton Castle Summary

 

Bolton Castle Description

Bolton Castle is an exceptional place in so many ways. The rolling Wensleydale hills provide a stirring background to a proud castle that can be seen for miles around and was clearly built for domination.

We may find that a rather daunting proposition nowadays, but it is a vital part of our history, and the displaying of that history and its progression into the 21st century, in a way that can be fully understood, is what Bolton Castle does so well.

The Castle escapes the trap of becoming a sort of domestic museum and tells it as it was, and now is. Completed in 1399 by Sir Richard le Scrope, Chancellor of England to King Richard II, it is a robust example of the times. Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned here, during the Civil War it was besieged, its ancient stones speak of centuries of wild weather.

About one third of the castle’s rooms are intact, and the remainder are almost completely accessible, providing a window into the turbulent past of this fortress that gradually followed the times into calmer waters. The old kitchens, the dungeon, a Solar, Nursery, Armoury, Great Chamber and Mary, Queen of Scots’s bedchamber all tell their own tales and are furnished in a manner that brings the past alive.

The sights, sounds, smells and artefacts of life from that past are all invoked and visitors speak, sometimes in awe, of their feeling that rooms they enter still bear tangible evidence of very recent occupation by those who have gone before.

Education

School visits find Bolton Castle a wonderful place in which to bring history alive, as they watch the falconry displays, sample the food their long ago ancestors were familiar with, and pick up on the numerous activities that suit their school syllabus. Adaptation is an art for the staff at Bolton, and every care is taken to ensure that history remains credible.

Weddings and Events

The opportunity to make your wedding day even more special is often to be found in historical buildings. Each have their own specialities and at Bolton Castle the Castle’s heir, Tom Orde-Powlett, trains owls to fly wedding rings down the aisle to waiting brides and grooms, though this is, of course, not obligatory, and they do have a host of more traditional wedding customs and wishes which they are well used to satisfying. Further details of weddings at this historic property can be found on their own Website.

The Tea Room

A cornucopia of wonderful tastes and dishes, specialising in seriously indulgent home baking are a feature of the Tea Room, heated by a huge log burner when needs must. A wonderful place for parties and special celebrations where Yorkshire hospitality predominates.

The Gardens

In 1260 the writer Albertus Magnus described the plants used in a medieval pleasure garden. They might, he said, ”refresh the sight with the variety of their flowers and . . . cause admiration at their manly forms in those who look at they”. The gardens at Bolton Castle have been renewed and rebuilt bearing those principles in mind, and the results are enchanting.

Opening Times

  • Open Daily from 14th February to 1st November 2015, 10am-5pm (Except Feb, March and October when castle closes at 4pm)
  • Please note we will close early on the following dates (usually Saturdays) due to weddings.Our last entry will be at 1pm and we will close at 2pm on: 26th April and 10th May.

Daily Activities

10.00 Castle opens
10.30 Archery demonstration and Children have a Go! (Courtyard)
11.30 Bird of Prey Display (Courtyard)
13:45 Archery Display
14.00 Flying Display (Garden)
15:00 Bird of Prey display
15.45 Archery Demonstration and Children have a Go! (Courtyard)
16.00 Wild Boar Feeding (Boar Park)
16.30 Last Admission
17.00 Castle Closes


Throughout the day we also have:
Trails, Childrens’ Costumes, Caligraphy, Medieval Games and Traditional Crafts

Season Tickets

Purchase as season ticket giving you unlimited visits to the Castle, Gardens and Grounds. Tickets available for Castle and Gardens or Gardens only and for individuals, couples and various family groups. Local Residents Season Tickets, visitors living in the DL8 postcode area now have the fantastic opportunity to pay once and visit for a full year. Please ask at admission desk on arrival. Visitors must provide proof of address to qualify for this offer.

Admission Prices

Adult - £8.50
Concessions (Over 60s, Students & Children aged 5-18) - £7.00
Family Ticket (2 adults & up to 3 concessions): £30.00

Gardens Only
(includes Boar Park, Falconry flying display, birds on weather, bee observation hive children’s trail, local rare breed sheep including Wensleydales)

  • Adults: £4
  • Concessions: £3 (Over 60s’, students and children aged 5-18)
  • Family: £12.50 (2 adults and up to 3 concessions which must include at least 1 child)

Groups welcome (minimum 15 people)

Further information including opening times and prices

Events for Bolton Castle

  • Lord Scrope’s Medieval Household - 09 May 2015 to 10 May 2015
    Find out what life was really like during the Castle’s Medieval heyday by meeting some colourful characters from the Castle’s Medieval household and having a go at a range of activities including weapon drills, calligraphy, cookery, herbal medicine and traditional crafts and games.
  • Witchcraft and Wizardry - 25 May 2015 to 29 May 2015
    Learn about Medieval views on witchcraft and what happened to suspected witches. Make a wand, love potion and witch or wizard hat!
  • Magna Melodia - music from the time of the Magna C - 12 June 2015
    Legends clustered around England's Angevin kings - it was thought they had devil’s blood in them... But this ’devil’s brood’ also presided over a magnificent musical scene. Medieval minstrels Trouvère take you back 800 years to experience the musical backdrop to the tumultuous events of 1215 when the English barons forced the Magna Carta on King John. Tickets: Adults £10, Conc £8. Booking Advised (01969 623981)
  • Fathers Day Sunday Lunch - 21 June 2015
    Treat Dad to a special roast sunday lunch with a bottle of beer of choice for Dad or a glass of wine/soft drink. Meal includes roast sirloin of beef or roast loin of pork , roast potatoes, yorkies and all the trimmings with red wine gravy. £12.50 per person. Booking Advised (01969 623981)
  • Dungeons and Dragons - 20 July 2015 to 24 July 2015
    The Dragons have escaped from the Castle dungeons! Dare you enter the Castle to find all of the Dragons and save the Queen? With dragon mask and kite making activities and dragon trails.
  • Tournee - 25 July 2015 to 26 July 2015
    Travel back in time over 600 years and discover all about Castle life in the early 1300s. With cookery demonstrations, displays of armour, squire training and archery.
  • Dungeons and Dragons - 27 July 2015 to 31 July 2015
    The Dragons have escaped from the Castle dungeons! Dare you enter the Castle to find all of the Dragons and save the Queen? With dragon mask and kite making activities and dragon trails.
  • Knights and Ladies - 03 August 2015 to 07 August 2015
    Step back in time at Bolton Castle and become a knight or a lady for a day by designing your own coat of arms, making a helmet or headdress and testing your skills on our Knights and Ladies activity trail.
  • Knights and Ladies - 10 August 2015 to 14 August 2015
    Step back in time at Bolton Castle and become a knight or a lady for a day by designing your own coat of arms, making a helmet or headdress and testing your skills on our Knights and Ladies activity trail.
  • Glorious Game Night - 15 August 2015
    Enjoy a sumptuous Game Feast in the atmospheric Castle Guest Hall. Tickets £35 per person (including five course meal) Booking Essential 01969 623981
  • Peasants and Princes - 17 August 2015 to 21 September 2015
    Discover the differences between the poorest peasants and the poshest princes and learn all about what life was like in Medieval times. With art and craft activities, trails and more.
  • Spanish Armada Weekend - 22 August 2015 to 23 August 2015
    As the Armada approached the Kent coast beacons were lit up and down the land warning of the impending invasion. Throughout the country militias’, such as those of Sir Henry, 9th Lord Scrope, prepared to defend the land. Meet characters from the castles household and garrison as they get ready for battle! Discover more about 16th century cookery, herbal medicine and weaponry. Put on your armour to take part in a Spear drill or learn how to fire the cannon!
  • Peasants and Princes - 24 August 2015 to 28 August 2015
    Discover the differences between the poorest peasants and the poshest princes and learn all about what life was like in Medieval times. With art and craft activities, trails and more.
  • Medieval Banquet - 04 September 2015
    Step back in time and experience an authentic Medieval banquet at Bolton Castle. Enjoy a medieval feast including vegetable pottage, hog roast and fruit posset with old English shortbread set in the atmospheric setting of the Great Chamber where guests have been entertained for over 600 years. A medieval feast was never just about food!
  • Agincourt Weekend - 17 October 2015 to 18 October 2015
    Find out all about Lord Scropes’ involvement in the Battle of Agincourt and learn about battle tactics and warfare. With archery competitions, displays of arms, battle re-enactments and much more.
  • Medieval Murder Mystery with The Chuffing Theatre - 24 October 2015
    Calling all super sleuths for an evening of murder and mayhem. Hog roast supper served amid the magnificence of The Great Hall. Licensed bar. Tickets £35 Booking Essential. Tickets Available on 01969 623981. It would be a crime to miss out on this most entertaining event!
  • Spooky Spectacular! - 26 October 2015 to 30 October 2015
    Dare you enter the Spooky Castle and meet the ghosts and ghouls within? With spooky activities, trails and games for children of all ages to enjoy!
  • Fright Night - 30 October 2015
    Are you feeling brave? Dress in your scariest outfit and join us for an harrowing ghost tour of Bolton Castle revealing stories of the spooky sightings within the castle walls which will send shivers down your spine! With live musical entertainment from Josh Westwood and band. Tickets £15 per person to include tour and entertainment. Hog roast and spooky refreshments available to purchase. Booking essential (01969 623981)
« More Events »

Your Reviews of Bolton Castle

Anon (16 August 2006)

I love this castle, it has kept many of its original features. Has a real medieval feel. And special event days are really fun for young and old. I will visit it time and time again.

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Additional Info for Bolton Castle

  • YesGardens
  • YesGroups
  • YesWeddings
  • YesEducation
  • YesRefreshments
  • YesPicnics
  • YesGuides
  • YesMeals Available
  • YesFilming
  • YesGifts
  • YesLive Entertainment
  • YesShop
  • YesCar Parking

Heritage Groups

  • YesHistoric Houses Association

Credit Cards Accepted

  • YesMastercard
  • YesVisa
  • YesSwitch
  • YesJCB

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