Launceston Castle


Cover a range of topics and learn more about life in a castle over several key historical periods, with a visit to Launceston Castle. Begun soon after the Norman Conquest, a stone keep was later added on top of a large natural mound, with stunning views over the surrounding landscape. The castle was also used as a prison during the 17th century, a Cornish Royalist base in the Civil War and later, a US field hospital during the First and Second World Wars.

Please note that the exhibition space will be temporarily closed from 6 June to 26 July 2022 inclusive. The rest of the site will remain open as usual.

Curriculum links

Visit Launceston Castle to support your teaching in a fun and engaging way, and cover multiple topics across the curriculum.

  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places within the locality
  • KS2 History: Local history study. Study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066
  • KS2 Geography: Use geographical skills and fieldwork. Understand the strategic significance of the castle’s position
  • KS3 History: Local history study. Development of Church, state and society in Britain 1066-1509 and 1509-1750
  • GCSE History: Study of the historic environment

Free Self-led Visits

Book a free self-led visit to organise your day to meet your curriculum objectives. Explore Launceston Castle to learn about what life was really like in a medieval castle: walk through the south gatehouse into the bailey which enclosed the main medieval buildings, before climbing up to the keep. At the top of the tower, look out over the surrounding town and countryside, and imagine what it would have been like to defend this castle from attack. Visit the exhibition room to learn more about the history of the castle, and try on historical costumes. 

Please note that the exhibition space will be temporarily closed from 6 June to 26 July 2022 inclusive. The rest of the site will remain open as usual.

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 for group leaders once you have made a booking. Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip!

  • Facilities
    • PARKING: There are a number of nearby pay and display car parks which can be used by visitors to the castle, including a multi-storey car park (managed by NCP) opposite the castle and long and short stay council owned car parks within a 10-15 minute walk. Disabled parking is available by prior arrangement, please call the castle.
    • TOILETS: Unfortunately there are no toilets available at the site.
    • LUNCH: Students are welcome to bring packed lunches and picnic on the grass, and there are some picnic benches available. 
    • SHOP: There is a shop selling a selection of English Heritage gifts and themed souvenirs. We recommend bringing your students in small groups at a time.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: The the outer bailey, exhibition and shop are accessible to wheelchair users. There are 64 steps leading up to the keep, with a number of resting places on the way up, and handrails are provided.
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