Discover a world of rich history at Lincoln Castle, dating back to 1068 and home to one of only four surviving copies of Magna Carta.
Built by William the Conqueror in 1068 on a site occupied since Roman times, Lincoln Castle has dominated the Lincoln skyline for almost one thousand years. Inside the Castle walls is also a Victorian prison giving an insight into crime and punishment in the Lincoln of the past.
Lincoln Castle hosts an exciting events programme through the year and offers free guided tours that provide a fascinating insight into the history of Lincoln and its Castle. Join one of the experienced tour guides to discover more about the history of Lincoln Castle and its role in the city through its history.
The Heritage Skills Centre, hidden within the Castle grounds, offers taster sessions on crafts such as stained glass works, silversmithing and stone carving.
Lincoln Castle's grounds are free to enter and explore on non-event days - perfect for a rest or a picnic in a unique location. Look out for the Castle Stories on plaques on the floor throughout that tell the stories of the people who have visited or even resided in the castle over the years.
Access to the Castle gift shop and Langton's Cafe is also free.
David PJ Ross Magna Carta Vault
The Castle is home to the Lincoln's own Magna Carta, one of only four original copies dating back to 1215, as well as the 1217 Charter of the Forest. Lincoln Castle is the only place where you can see the two documents together in the world, a unique opportunity to see the documents that shaped society as we know it today.
Lincoln's Magna Carta takes residence in the state-of-the-art, subterranean David P J Ross Magna Carta Vault within the renovated Castle walls. Go underground to see the document itself, read the words in English and learn about its history and significance in a 210° cinema room.
Please note: at certain times during the year documents are at rest and unavailable. Please see the Lincoln Castle website for details of which documents are on display and when or call 01522 554559 for details.
Medieval Wall Walk & Audio Guides
Accessible by a spiral staircase or lift, Lincoln Castle's Medieval wall walk is a unique experience. Visitors can walk the whole circumference of the walls giving stunning views over Lincoln - including one of the best views of Lincoln Cathedral in the city.
An audio guide is available to tell you of the Castle's history and to highlight sites that can be seen across Lincolnshire from the high vantage points - a different version is available for adults and children. The adult guide is available in English, French, and German.
Georgian & Victorian Prison
Lincoln Castle's Georgian and Victorian Prison was built in 1788 and was used as a debtor's prison until 1878.
The prison accommodated the 'separate system' - keeping prisoners isolated to encourage them to reflect, repent and reform. This can be seen by the single cells and the unique separate system chapel - the only original of its kind left in the world.
Three floors of restored prison cells, over a male and female wing, offer an opportunity to learn about the justice system of Victorian England. Living history prisoners & guards and interactive touch-screen tables show videos and information about the historic people that spent their life in the prison.
During Lincoln Castle's 2013 excavations and restoration, an ancient, Anglo-Scandinavian church was found 3m below the ground. Objects found during the dig are on display in the Castle featuring a stone sarcophagus containing the body of a high status individual - known due to the shoes worn at the point of burial.
The church and the ten skeletons found in it will be brought to life in an exhibition showing finds including the skeletons and other objects found dating back to Roman, Medieval, Georgian and Victorian times.
Although Lincoln Castle is a historic monument, a huge effort has been made to ensure as much of it as possible to accessible to as many visitors as possible.
The majority of the grounds of the castle are flat and accessible. The Medieval Wall Walk has a lift to the east section, which is flat and has stunning views of Lincoln Cathedral. An audio guide is available for the Medieval Wall Walk and a transcript of the full script is available for visitors with hearing impairments.
Some parts of the Victorian Prison have very narrow walkways and doors making access difficult for wheelchair users, although there are lifts to all three floors of the prison, and a viewing platform for the chapel. Transcripts of the Victorian Prison films are available.
There is a lift to the David PJ Ross Magna Carta Vault, which is fully accessible. Transcripts of the Magna Carta films are available.
Admission is free for carers of visitors with disabilities - please note that proof of eligibility may be requested. The castle has two wheelchairs for hire. Assistance dogs are welcome.
Find out more about accessibility at Lincoln Castle on the Lincoln Castle Access Statement.
Lincoln Castle welcomes groups of up to 50 with 10% discount on entry and catering available. Download a suggested Lincoln Castle for Groups itinerary or email Lincoln Castle for further information.