Built to control a river crossing, this imposing medieval castle is set up on a high rock overlooking the River Tees. Building began on the castle after 1093 and much of what remains today has survived from the 12th and early 13th centuries. With its rich and often turbulent history, your class can explore the development of the castle and its buildings much favoured by the Duke of Gloucester, later Richard III.
“The trip gave the pupils a fantastic opportunity to embrace their local history."
Image © Historic England Archive
Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to Barnard Castle will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.
- KS1-3 History: Local History Study
- KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality
- KS2 History: Study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066
- KS3 History: The development of church, state and society in Britain 1066-1509 and 1509-1745
Free Self-Led Visits
Book a free self-led visit to Barnard Castle and organise your day to suit your curriculum objectives. Explore the inner ward of the castle and try and find Richard III’s boar emblem carved above a window. Look out over the Tees gorge to see why the castle was built in this location.Enquire Now
Plan Your Trip
We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. You can find all our site-specific information and tools below, and for Covid-19 risk assessments and measures we’ve got in place please visit our what to expect page.
Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip. We also offer free planning visits once you have made a booking, plus a 20% discount on the official English Heritage guidebook for your place of choice.
Once you book your visit you’ll be sent a visit permit, which you’ll need to bring with you on the day.
Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip!
Teaching Medieval History
Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of medieval history.
How to Take a Medieval Castle
Watch our short animation to learn more about how to take a medieval castle.
A Mini Guide to Castles
Discover how castles developed over time with this short introduction.
0370 333 0606
If you’d like more information about a site or one of our workshops, get in touch using the online form on our bookings page to speak to your local Education Visits Officer. We look forward to seeing you soon.