Visiting English Heritage sites – Carlisle Castle

Our second outing was to Carlisle Castle on August Bank Holiday.  There was a special event with displays entitled “Redcoat to Khaki”.  Small groups dressed in authentic uniforms from various times demonstrated their weapons and drill.

Part of encampment viewed from battlements
Part of encampment viewed from battlements

There were also encampments with women and children.  The ways in which the soldiers spent their off-duty hours were demonstrated with various games being evident. A proficient musician played a medley of songs, which were relevant to the various times.  There were opportunities for children to have a go at marching and the people in costume were available to answer questions.

Historical Display
Historical Display

We had visited Carlisle Castle twice before, but not for many years.  It has an interesting history being in the “debatable lands” near the border of England and Scotland.  There is also a museum of military history with a café on the site.  We enjoyed some English Lakes ice cream after we had eaten our picnic lunch.


We nearly missed the warden’s rooms above the shop.

It was a beautiful sunny Bank holiday (quite different from the weather in much of England).  Most of the site is open to the elements.  I was glad of a sunhat and put my lightweight raincoat on the grass to sit and watch the displays.  I was a bit slow getting up and moving out of the way of a gas attack!

The English Heritage personnel were welcoming and helpful.  This was a very interesting and enjoyable day out.

Many people are confused about which country Carlisle is in – it has streets named after England and Scotland.  Did you know which before you read this post?


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