The widely-anticipated reopening of Nottingham Castle is to take place on 21 June, following £30m of development aimed at attracting more visitors to Nottingham and boosting the local economy.
The three-year period of extensive redevelopment was supported with a £7m investment from D2N2 LEP (£5million from the Local Growth Fund and £2million from Enterprise Zone business rates income) along with backing from the National Heritage Lottery Fund, Nottingham City Council and Arts Council England, plus fundraising by the Nottingham Castle Trust.
Visitors can expect to enjoy the following highlights:
- Permanent exhibitions celebrating legends and rebels throughout history
- Hood’s Hideout and other family-friendly activities
- Interactive displays to learn about Nottingham’s “curious rebels”
- A unique heritage site situated in the middle of a busy city centre
The Nottingham Castle project is at the heart of the City Council’s vision for the wider regeneration of the city, with £2bn of redevelopments currently underway transforming the city’s Southside and further significant plans in the pipeline such as reimagining the Broadmarsh site, to help put Nottingham on the map.
The timing of its reopening coinciding with the final stage of the National Roadmap will now mean the Castle also plays a big part in the city bouncing back from the impact of the pandemic.
For the 9.5m people living within 90 minutes’ drive, it will provide an absorbing visit of up to four hours, with an improved cave experience, galleries with interactive exhibits telling Nottingham’s stories of Robin Hood and rebellion, plus a fantastic new outdoor play area and visitor centre.
Acting as a major draw for people to come back into the city and enjoy what it has to offer, it will help to support local retail and hospitality businesses as they and their customers emerge from over a year of on-off Covid restrictions on 21 June.
World-class heritage site
Sara Blair-Manning, Chief Executive of Nottingham Castle Trust, said: “Nottingham Castle has been transformed into a world-class heritage site; this is a highly-anticipated moment for fans of the Robin Hood legend, as well as for anyone planning to make the most of time with friends and family this summer.”
Sajeeda Rose, Chief Executive of D2N2 said: “We are excited to hear of the reopening of Nottingham Castle, which is a flagship project in the overall Southside redevelopment which we have been proud to support with a total of £62m of funding. The opening of the Castle marks a significant milestone for the local tourism economy as it looks forward to opening up over the coming months.”
Anne Jenkins, Director England Midlands and East, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are proud to have worked in partnership with Nottingham City Council, D2N2 and Nottingham Castle Trust to support Nottingham Castle in realising their ambition to become a first class visitor destination. We are confident Nottingham’s heritage strategy has stood the city in good stead as we look ahead to the role heritage can play in a post Covid-19 recovery.”