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Record Breaking Year For Yarmouth Castle In 2023

Yarmouth Castle is one of a myriad of English Heritage sites to have enjoyed record breaking numbers of visitors in 2023.

English Heritage welcomed more families to its historic sites last year than ever before, the charity announced today (Wednesday) as it prepares to open its doors (and drawbridges) this weekend for its 2024 season.

More than 550,000 families enjoyed a visit to English Heritage sites in 2023, the highest figure since records began and an increase of 54% over the last decade.

Stonehenge alone saw family visits increase by 23% year on year, with 2023 its best-ever year for families.

Overall, visitor figures to English Heritage sites were up 12% year on year and eight of the charity’s historic castles, palaces and abbeys reported their highest ever number of visitors last year, with a further ten experiencing their best years in over a decade.

Yarmouth Castle was up 4% on 2022 numbers, enjoying its best year ever.

Once one of Henry VIII's most sophisticated coastal fortresses, it was designed to guard the western entrance to the Solent and prevent capture of the Island as a prelude to larger assaults in the south of England.

Kate Logan, Historic Properties Director at English Heritage, said:

“Everyone remembers the first castle they ever visited and what I think we’re seeing in these numbers is a desire amongst parents to pass on that experience of wonder and awe and might.

"And what better way to relive that than through the eyes of their own children?

"For us, it’s an absolute pleasure to see so many families enjoying our sites, especially as we’ve been working so hard to share their great stories in ways that appeal to every member of the family.”

The other English Heritage sites to enjoy an upturn in 2023 were:

  • Aldborough Roman Site in North Yorkshire – up 10% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2005
  • Belsay Hall in Northumberland – up 26% up on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2010
  • Clifford’s Tower in York – up 1% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Deal Castle in Kent – up 9% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Eltham Palace in London – up 9% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Furness Abbey in Cumbria – up 6% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2007 
  • Helmsley Castle in North Yorkshire – up 10% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Kirby Muxloe Castle in Leicestershire – up 12% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2013
  • Lindisfarne Priory in Northumberland – up 17% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2006
  • Pevensey Castle in East Sussex – up 6% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2006
  • Portland Castle in Dorset – up 20% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Richborough Roman Fort and Amphitheatre in Kent – up 145% on 2021 (not open in 2022), with 2023 its best year since 1997
  • St Augustine’s Abbey in Kent – up 29% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2000
  • Stokesay Castle in Shropshire – up 16% on 2022, with 2023 its best year since 2007
  • Tintagel Castle in Cornwall – up 20% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Wrest Park in Bedfordshire – up 23% on 2022, with 2023 its best year ever
  • Wroxeter Roman City in Shropshire

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