Nottingham Castle

Nottinghamshire, NG1 6EL

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This ducal mansion, built on the site of the original medieval castle, houses important collections of fine and decorative art and galleries on local history and archeology.

The original castle, built by William the Conqueror in 1068, would become immortalised as the stronghold of the Sheriff in the Robin Hood stories. The Italian-inspired palace that stands at the site today was built in the 17th century by the Duke of Newcastle, William Cavendish and his son, Henry. In 1832, rioters protesting against the then-Duke of Newcastle's opposition to the Reform Act burned the building down. It was restored in 1875 and opened as Nottingham Castle Museum. There are plans for an extensive refurbishment, starting in 2016.

One of the world's finest collections of Wedgwood ceramics can be seen alongside silver and glass, while highlights from the city's painting collection are displayed in Long Gallery.

Fifteen centuries of Nottingham history are brought to life through interactive displays, and the galleries host exhibitions by regional, national and international artists.

Art we’ve helped buy at Nottingham Castle

Nottingham Castle was one of eight museums to win a share of £75,000 from the Art Fund in 2010 as part of Art Fund Collect, an annual initiative that allows museums to acquire significant works of art from the Crafts Council's art fair Collect.

The chosen object, a brooch by Italian goldsmith Giovanni Corvaja, was bought by Nottingham Castle with a 100% grant from the Art Fund of £13,000. It is made from gold and platinum gossamer and platinum wire. The gossamer is as fine as human hair and is scattered with drops of coloured enamel.

The Passion of Christ altarpiece at Nottingham Castle is one of only two near-complete Nottingham alabaster altarpieces in the UK. It is dominated by a central panel depicting the Holy Trinity and features scenes from the Passion on either side. The piece was given a grant of £12,375 in 1983 towards the total cost of £49,500.

Venue information

Opening times

Feb – Oct
Daily, 10am – 5pm

Nov – Feb
Wed – Sun, 10am – 4pm

"Art Fund" is the operating name of the National Art Collections Fund, a charity registered in England and Wales (209174) and Scotland (SC038331)