Old Sarum

Things To See and Do

What you need to know

We've made some changes to help keep you safe, and things might be a little different when you visit. Here's everything you need to know.

  • Do we need to Book?

    Advance booking is now essential. We have introduced limits on visitor numbers to help keep everyone safe, and you won’t be able to visit without your booking confirmation. If you’re a Member, your ticket will be free, but you still need to book in advance. Make sure you've read our ticketing FAQ before you book.


    Booking FAQs

  • How are you keeping us safe?

    We've made a number of changes to help keep you safe. Although things might be a little different when you visit, you’ll still be able to enjoy exploring the places where history really happened. And you’ll still be given a warm and safe welcome by our friendly – if socially distant – staff and volunteers.

    You can visit our reopening page for information on general safety measures we've taken to help keep you safe.

    General Safety Information

  • Do I need to wear a face covering?

    Face coverings must be worn in all indoor areas. We won't be able to provide you with a face covering, so please come prepared so you don't miss out.

The Iron Age Hillfort

Rising up from the Salisbury plains, the Iron Age Hillfort of Old Sarum is hard to miss. The impressive ramparts consist of two earth banks separated by a ditch.

First created around 400BC, they were later heightened in either the late Iron Age or early Roman period. Read about the history of Old Sarum.

The Royal Castle

Cross Old Sarum's wooden bridge and step into the heart of a once bustling medieval castle. Built around 1070 by William the Conqueror, it was here in 1086 that William gathered all the powerful men of England for a ceremony to assert his royal authority.

Building the castle in the middle of the old earthworks transformed the site. It created an inner set of fortifications which became home to a complex of towers, halls and apartments, and a huge bailey.

Salisbury's First Cathedral

Stand in the footprint of Salisbury's original cathedral in the outer bailey of Old Sarum. The first cathedral was a modest building damaged by a violent thunderstorm just five days after its consecration in 1092. It was later massively extended by Bishop Roger.

In 1220 foundations were laid for a new cathedral in Salisbury (New Sarum) and Bishop Roger's cathedral was demolished. Many of its stones were re-used in the construction of the new building. The outline of both the original and extended cathedrals can be seen today.

'step into englands story