Alnwick (pronounced Annick) is a small market town in Northumberland and is home to one of the most beautiful castles in England. It is about 5km from the east coast.
We have visited this lovely little town many times when up in Northumberland. The castle was the main reason the first time we went as my daughter wanted to see where Harry Potter was filmed. The castle was used as Hogwarts in the first two films. When we first visited the castle they still had a lot of Harry Potter exhibits on show and had even used Haggrid's hut as a sweetshop. The subsequent times we went there they had wound down the Potter stuff in order to concentrate on other aspects of the castle. They still manage to have lots of different things to do for kids though, so it's a very entertaining day out.
The castle really dominates the landscape, with masses of land surrounding it and formal gardens, all of which you can visit for a price. Worth visiting at least once though, but rather expensive as it costs £22 for an adult to visit both castle and gardens. There are also some good gift shops and a café on site, though again, rather expensive goods.
The town itself is very quaint, with a lovely archway that leads through to the main street. The town square is a pleasant place to stop and usually there is some event or another going on. On Saturdays there is a lovely market where you can buy all sorts of things, from vegetables and other foods to clothes and homewares.
There are too many different types of shops to mention, but you can buy most things in the town and there is a good Morrisions supermarket for groceries of all kinds as well as lots of little gift shops too. It's a lovely place to explore with lots of little alleyways that hide little gems of shops that you might otherwise miss. There are plenty of places to stop and eat too, with good pubs and cafés which serve food of all kinds.
The best establishment in Alnwick though is Barters Book Shop! Set in an old disused railway station, Barters is where you can buy secondhand books of any kind. It's an old dusty shop and usually packed with customers! They sell secondhand records, CDs, DVDs and videos as well as books of all kinds. While you browse, a huge model train runs round a track overhead. It's an amazing place! My kids love it and my hubby HAS to go there whenever we are up that way. Ususally we spend more money in Barters than anywhere else in Alnwick!
So if you are in Northumberland and want to visit a really lovely town, Alnwick should be your first port of call. Do take plenty to spend though, particularly if you visit the castle or are a book-lover!
Most of, no i think all of my friend don't like this town were i live, but i don't know why, but i kind of like it. THE FOOTBALL MATCH. The first thing in Alnwick that happens on an annual basis is the Pancake Day 'football' match. Basically its a day of madness, where kids of all ages take a day off school or work and go and play 'FOOTBALL', mind they use this term loosey, as the Alnwick game there is no offsides, no touch lines, no coners, and the 'goals', 'Hails' as they are called, their are about two feet wide, and 7 foot tall, it is strange, but if you score you can win money. But its good for a laugh. ALNWICK FAIR How can i best descrive this, It OK if it is the first time that you have whitnessed such madness, but when you've seen 20 years of the fair it become quite repetative. We all know that the only excuse for Alnwick Fair is drink. People take a week off work and do nothing but drink at night time. During the day there is sort of street entertainment in the market place, children from local schools proform on the stage and you get the odd comedy performance, which is OK. The night time entertainment is quite good, the storng man competition, which is run up and down a hill between 2 pubs. If you like live local rock bands you'll love your nights out juring fair week. But that's enough about the fair. THE FAIR IS HELD IN THE LAST WEEK OF JUNE. ALNWICK INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL This is a folk music festival which brings together music and dance groups from all over the world together in one place. Now (Aug. 2001) it's 25 year old, and its getting stronger and stronger. In past years there has been groups from Russia, Canada, USA, Australia, and many other countries preform in this little town called Alnwick. I love festival week, it is. I would say, the best time to come to Alnwick. THE FESTIVAL HELD IN THE FIRST WEEK IN AUGUST. A
nd how could i forget: ALNWICK CASTLE The back drop for many a Film and TV series, only last year the Harry Potter Film was shot within the castle walls, the original Black Adder was film on land just next to the castle. Inside the castle is amazing, apparently the 2nd best castle in England for intrior design. Home of the Percy Family (Duke of Northumberland) you could imagine the wealth and treasures this family have aquired. And finally ALNWICK GARDEN PROJECT At an estimated cost of £15,000,000 the Duke and Duchess have put together, along with top garden designers, the local council, and many other firms and governing bodies, a scheme to put Alnwick within the 5 Horticultural site in Britain. I am sure that the garden will be a massive. All of there things are worth coming and seeing at least once, And you never know come to Alnwick and you might falling love with it.