Discover King John's Palace

Exciting news for Sherwood Forest! The Sherwood Forest Trust has won the Big Lottery Fund People's Millions national funding programme for a community heritage project at King John's Palace, near Mansfield, the ancient heart of Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire.

Though Sherwood Forest is known to almost everyone around the planet, little has been developed in telling the real legend of this noble heritage forest, and the Palace site is key to this story.

King John's Palace is a Grade II listed ruin that was used by many of the Kings of England during medieval times and played an important role in the development of Magna Carter in 1215.

The project will run from January to December 2015 and will benefit people by:

  • crafting new interpretation boards for visitors to understand better the site
  • organising a series of Time Team archaeological digs for 300 adults and children
  • involving 750 children from local schools to use the site
  • leafleting 2000 households to raise awareness
  • holding a grand community event
  • create a loan heritage chest that schools can use for their curriculum

We see this project as the first phase of creating a resource for local people, and in the longer term for visitors to Sherwood Forest, so it can add to the growth of an area that has suffered economically during the last few decades. It will also provide a positive focus for people to be proud of where they live, and be more connected to a common heritage.

The Sherwood Forest Trust celebrates their 20th anniversary during 2015 and they would love this project to be the heritage highlight. Years ago, they worked closely with the landowner's Mickie and Martin Bradley, Nottinghamshire County Council, English Heritage and the local community to stabilise the Palace ruins and ensure that what remains above ground was not lost forever and to help conserve the site for future generations.

They want to tell the story of King John's Palace to create a sense of historic identity and inspire future generations. And for the Trust, what better way to crown the Sherwood Forest Trust's birthday year.

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