Visit Barnard Castle and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Barnard Castle, County Durham. Here, on a cliff above the Tees, is a picturesque centre for discovering the delights of Teesdale. The castle was founded by Guy de Bailleul and rebuilt by his nephew, Bernard Balliol, after about 1150. Its ruins cover 6½ acres. The chief survival is the Round Tower, mostly 14th-century, offering a splendid view which inspired Sir Walter Scott when he was writing Rokeby.
The town which grew up outside the castle has two broad main thoroughfares today: Galgate, leading up to the Methodist church and castle entrance, and Market Place, at a right angle to it, with a cobblestone car park and, at the bottom, an octagonal, two-tiered Market Hall or Cross built in 1747. There used to be a lock-up in the centre, shelter for butter-sellers in the colonnaded veranda and an administrative hail upstairs. Charles Dickens stayed at the King's Head Hotel in 1838 while writing Nicholas Nickleby. At a corner of the Market Place is St Marys Church, largely Norman and Transitional. The west tower is a replacement of 1874. Inside, the 15th-century chancel arch, leading into the raised chancel, rests on the head of Edward IV on the left pillar and that of Richard III, who obtained Barnard Castle by marriage, on the right.
Descending The Bank from the Market Cross, the visitor comes to Blagraves House, a narrow, four-story gabled Tudor house in which Oliver Cromwell may have been entertained with mulled wine and shortcake in 1648. Thorngate still has some interesting l8th-century houses. Their long top-floor windows used to light weaving lofts. On the riverside are disused sandstone factories which recall the days when the town was important as a textile and carpet manufacturing centre. There are lovely riverside walks here, especially to Egglestone Abbey on the Yorkshire side.
The Bowes Museum West of the town is a surprise however many times you see it. It is a massive 19th-century French château designed by Jules Pellechet for John Bowes, son of the Earl of Strathmore, and his wife, a French actress and artist. The couple collected paintings, furniture and ceramics. Both had died by the time their dream of a museum was realized in 1892. The museum was run by trustees until the Durham County Council acquired it in 1956. it stands in a 21-acre park with gardens, bowling green and tennis courts.
Nearby towns: Appleby-in-Westmorland, Bishop Auckland, Brough, Consett, Crook, Darlington, Kirkby Stephen, Richmond, Reeth, Stanhope, Wolsingham
Nearby villages: Barningham, Bowes, Brignall, Caldwell, Cockfield, Copley, Cotherstone, Eastgate, Eggleston, Evenwood, Frosterley, Hamsterley, Hilton, Hury, Hutton Magna, Kirby Hill, Langton, Lartington, Marwood, Mickleton, Middleton-in-Teesdale, Morley, Ravensworth, Rokeby, Romaldkirk, Staindrop, Stainton, Startforth, Westgate, Whorlton, Winston, Woodland, Wycliffe
Have you decided to visit Barnard Castle or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Barnard Castle bed and breakfast (a Barnard Castle B&B or Barnard Castle b and b)
- a Barnard Castle guesthouse
- a Barnard Castle hotel (or motel)
- a Barnard Castle self-catering establishment, or
- other Barnard Castle accommodation