Photos of Alnwick Castle
What will students see and do?
Alnwick Castle is one of Britain’s most famous and iconic castles. It was built in the 11th century to control and protect the border, symbolising status and power for the new Norman barons across the country.
As a result of its role in history, the castle boasts numerous defences, including 2m thick walls, a 7m deep moat, two baileys and thick oak gates. The site has undergone several renovations in order to preserve this important historic structure.
The Percy Family still live in Alnwick Castle, making it the second-largest inhabited castle in England, second only to Windsor Castle. It has also appeared in numerous films and shows, including Transformers: The Last Knight, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Downton Abbey’s 2015 and 2016 Christmas specials, and the first two Harry Potter films as Hogwarts.
The castle hosts the Duke of Northumberland’s collection of fine and decorative art, one of the most important in the United Kingdom outside the Royal Collection. Visitors can peruse this collection as well as the historic facilities on their own or with a 30-minute guided tour.
The Gruesome Grounds Tour (KS2-3) introduces students to the strangest, goriest and most unique parts of Alnwick Castle’s history. Alternatively, you can contact the Head Guide to request a bespoke tour covering a specific topic.
Teaching resources provided
Alnwick Castle has produced a range of history-based educational resources to help with your students’ learning and support your visit.
These include a stateroom trail, grounds trail booklet, Alnwick Castle checklist and word search.
There are also several activity packs related to the history of Alnwick Castle and the Percy family. They include the following activities:
• The Tudors: List your favourite facts that you already know about the Tudors, add ‘true’ or ‘false’ to the supplied statements, explain what Henry Percy took with him to France, and complete the timeline linked to Queen Elizabeth I.
• Monarchs of England: Complete the order of monarchs, fill in the blanks to correct the history, and plan your own royal visit.
• Knights and Alnwick Castle: Write down what you think of when you hear the word ‘knight’, add ‘true’ or ‘false’ to the training required to become a knight, make your own knight and create a legendary tale for them.
• Jobs in Alnwick Castle: Match the job title to the description given, find all the castle jobs in the word search, and pick a job and plan your day.
• Castles: Link the castle feature to its definition, and find the castle features in the word search.
• Alchemy in Alnwick Castle: Write down what you know about Nicolas Flamel, explain what would be in your laboratory to help create the Philosopher’s Stone, and give your thoughts on the stone.
Minimum and maximum group size
Number of pupils varies depending on the activity – Alnwick Castle typically accommodates a maximum of 25-30.
Details of risk assessment
PDF copies of relevant risk assessments are available on request.
Once a booking is confirmed, two adults can visit Alnwick Castle for free in advance of the visit, to check safety procedures.
Don't miss our downloadable A-Z guide on completing a risk assessment
Visitors to Alnwick Castle will find a replica Napoleonic cannon, a ‘capability’ brown walk, an artisans courtyard and ‘Dragon Quest’, the staterooms, a broomstick training area, a have-a-go archery range, mini-museums and walking trails.
Castle Grounds: 10am to 5.30pm (last entry at 3pm)
Artisan’s Courtyard: 10am to 4.30pm (last entry at 4pm)
State Rooms: 10.30am to 4.30pm (last entry at 4pm)
Museum Towers: 10am to 5.30pm (last entry at 4.30pm)
Fusiliers Museum: 11am to 4.45pm (last entry at 4.30pm)
Courtyard Gift Shop: 10am to 5pm
Diana Gift Shop: 11am-4pm
Stables Fryery: 11am-3.30pm
The Armoury: 10am-4.30pm
Primary school students: £7.25 (one free adult per five students)
Secondary school students: £7.25 (one free adult per 10 students)
Further education students: £11.95 (one free adult per 15 students)
Additional teacher/adult: £12.95
Just off the A1 and easily accessible by train and bus, Alnwick Castle is perfectly situated in the heart of Northumberland.
Follow the postcode NE66 1YU for The Alnwick Garden car park; a parking charge of £3 per vehicle applies for the day and the car park is open from 9am during the castle open season. However, if you are taking a coach, Alnwick provides free entry for your coach driver and a complimentary food voucher.
The closest station is Alnmouth station, which is four miles from Alnwick.
There are bus stops and a bus station in the centre of Alnwick, approximately five-minutes’ walk from the castle.
Book your school trip to Alnwick Castle
For information on booking your school trip to this venue, click below.