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Nottinghamshire County Council - Proud of our past, ambitious for our future
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Discover Robin Hood

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A world class visitor attraction

Discover Robin Hood will be totally unique. No other attraction aims to relive life in the time of Robin Hood, nor attempts to bring to life the colourful stories, myths and legends that surround him, his compatriots and enemies.

Sherwood Forest is one of the most famous forests in the world and Discovery Attractions' proposal will use a mix of indoor and outdoor experiences to keep families engaged for hours - whatever the weather. View some artist's impressions of what the attraction might look like.

Discover Sherwood Forest

A Discover Sherwood Forest dome will offer you the fantastic opportunity to delve into the history, life and wildlife of Sherwood Forest. It's educational and fun, quirky, inspirational hands on fun for all ages. This presentation will leave no stone, leaf or fallen log unturned in its quest to tell the story of this amazing forest.

In a supporting exhibition we explore the ecology in more detail: using microscopes to look at some of the smallest creatures and plants; an interactive exhibition on the ancient oaks; how we should all look after the forest for everyone's future; and hands-on experience with fungi, bugs, beetles and spiders.

Open Air Theatre

The open air theatre provides a space for shows and presentations while the Tournament Field is used for special events such as jousting shows, Son et Lumiere with dancing fountains, hawking and falconry, horsemanship, archery contests and costumed medieval theatre.

The Village

On peak days the castle grounds come alive into a bustling world where animals roam, street entertainers perform, and craftsmen demonstrate their talents - it's a Medieval Village Fair.

Watch a bow maker construct the finest bow and find out why some trees make better bows than others. Have a go at firing some arrows at the straw filled effigies of the Sheriff of Nottingham and Guy of Gisborne.

See the herbalist mix the potions of old said to ease aching joints and overcome ailments. Take part in a wild food cookery demonstration and try some of the delicacies of the forest. A variety of hands on activities will be available.

Castle Dungeons and Knight's School

The Dungeons and Torture Chamber down in the bowels of the castle scares the living daylights out of old and young alike. The Knight's School provides the opportunity to:

  • Dress up in armour and try out jousting and archery
  • Train in poll arm fighting and swordsmanship
  • Ride the animatronic steed
  • Slay dragons and rescue damsels!
  • There is even a secret world for Princesses.

Robin Hood Exploratorium

At the end of the Inner Bailey lies The Exploratorium - a fascinating emporium in which to discover all manner of things about the legend of Robin Hood and life in those times. It's educational and fun, quirky, inspirational hands on fun for all ages. A combination of real artefacts, film footage, touch screens, interactive floors, music and words.

Adventure Play

Up at the far end of the attraction lies Robin Hood's Hideout - an adventure playground that has something for kids of all ages. Those brave enough can attempt a number of challenges and quests, collecting points as you go round whilst avoiding the laser arrows of the sheriffs men and trying not to trigger the nets set to trap those who don't keep their wits about them. There is even an online high-score; real life play reclaiming its rightful place over video games. This woodland assault course has three levels of difficulty to suit height and age groups. There are also a few rustic shelters set within magical lush landscaping that are used for fireside storytelling, Medieval music making/dancing and the like.

Maze and Barefoot Trail

The large central maze is filled with elements of the woods: talking trees, thumbnail sized wildlife blown up to person size. Lose yourself in the maze with your family, finally exiting either meekly via the walkway or through the 'death drop slide' with its vertical drop that delivers you onto a gently sloping slide that ends in the castle's central arena.

There's a bare foot trail – walk on bark, timber, coal, pebbles, wood and clay and let the mud ooze between your toes (and fingers!) before enjoying a soothing foot bath. Something designed for the whole family to enjoy together, from toddlers to wheelchair users. As you walk you'll be improving your health and vitality in accordance with the historic principles of Pastor Sebastian Kneipp!

Robin Hood in 4D

A 10 minute 4D film show that shows continuously throughout the day and depicts the struggle involving the Sheriff, Maid Marion and Robin Hood.

The Main Show

The jewel in the crown of Discover Robin Hood is the Main Show developed by Discovery Attractions in conjunction with the special effects wizardry and storytelling talents of BRC Imagination Arts from California. Using a unique blend of live action, 4D projection, special effects and theatrical illusions you will be transported back to 12th Century England to join Robin and his brave band of compassionate warriors on their adventures.

Funding

No council funding will be needed to build nor to run this facility and visitor attraction. A total of around £13m will be initially invested by Discovery Attractions’ backers to design and build the facility and visitor attraction, with further investments coming from retained profits in the forthcoming years.

The County Council will assist Discovery Attractions with the removal and remediation of the existing Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre, the provision of new access across the Swinecote Road (by a wooden bridge) and possibly to provide for highways work if this is needed.

When will it happen?

First phase: New visitor centre, cafe and shop to open Spring 2015

Second phase: Full visitor attraction to open Easter 2016

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