November’s Letter from the Curator (2017)

The Vikings have left in a roaring crowd of leather and chainmail. Our bonfire nights are now nationally famous with people travelling from all over the UK and staying in local hotels specially to attend which is so wonderful. Thanks to all who supported us yet again.  For those who don’t remember we decided to have Guy Fawkes and a load of soldiers arresting him for treason but hilariously the visitors didn’t like it half as much as the Vikings.  Only in England!

It is peaceful now and the Rooks are screaming in dark circling clouds above the ruins. A perfect backdrop for ghost-hunts as our busy season for night time screaming is upon us.  This place scares the living daylights out of some people and they very often come back again to have a fright again. Our new staff usually experience something creepy within a couple of weeks of being here. I’ve been here so long the ghosts take no notice of me these days but when I dress As Mary Queen of Scots the atmosphere really does seem to change – or maybe it is my imagination. That is what I keep telling myself anyway.

What now? Happy little (and large) school groups coming to see one of my Queens and our Knights in shining armour or making crowns for the little ones. We offer castle studies courses for GCSE’s and A level standards as well as a cascade of keystage courses in history and creative writing across  school ages. We even have a Living Maths course that locks into primary maths key stages making it exciting and relevant.  Do call 01283 812129 to find out more about booking a ghosthunts.

We also have lots of events on over the autumn/winter seasons where individuals can buy tickets e.g. not in groups to come and see some of my historical characters and enjoy a meal. Nell Gwynne will be her bawdy best on 15th. December which is followed by hot mince pies and mulled wine at a cost of just £12.50 a ticket. Next comes Boudicca (lots of people have asked for her but not had a chance to meet her yet) on 24th. November at £20.00 a ticket following a two course meal so a great lunch time bit of fun and bloodshed. Katherine Swynford on 5th. December, tickets are £20.00 and include a two course lunch.  If you don’t know Katherine she was mistress and wife of John of Gaunt and a very naughty girl – happily!  I am blazing is red silk and an amazing late 15th. century gold headdress , all sensational for Christmas. Finally for those with strong eyebrows – “Sex and the Tudors” on 14th. December, Christmas lunch, two courses and then the talk – all for just £20.00.  Do look on the website for further details or call to pay by card on 01283 812129.

Then at last, it is Christmas.  The Castle looks glorious at Christmas with teh Great Hall decorated and log fire burning. No wonder so many weddings are booked over the Christmas season. It is really romantic. We also offer a proposal package when the Great Hall can be booked and a ring perhaps hanging on our Christmas tree for that romantic moment of popping the question. A glass of champagne is included and a special lunch for two can also be arranged served for you and your partner so you can have the most memorable lunchtime ever. Do call 01283812129 for further details and yes, we can keep a secret.

Also don’t miss our Pilgrimage Through Time – a spectacular journey through the history of Tutbury Priory Church presented by Tutbury Castle. Sunday 3 December. Characters from history will be dotted around the church and visitors in guided groups will hear the tale of each character and their impact on the Priory Church. It will be romantic and remarkable in equal measure.  A great way to fill a Sunday afternoon when the nights are drawing in.


All details on this website.

Have a fantastic time planning for Christmas


Kind regards

Lesley Smith