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Robin Hood Festival

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Performers at the Robin Hood Festival

2014 Festival

The 30th Annual Robin Hood Festival will take place from 4-10 August 2014 at Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre in Edwinstowe.

Admission to the festival is free with a car parking charge of £5 per day.

Use the tabs below to get information on travel, parking, opening hours, costs, facilities, programme of events and accommodation in the nearby area.

If you can't find the answer to your query contact our Customer Service Centre on 0300 500 8080 or email: enquiries@nottscc.gov.uk.

Photo gallery

See photos of previous Robin Hood Festivals.

Location

The Robin Hood Festival takes place at Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre. 

Edwinstowe
Mansfield
Nottinghamshire
NG21 9HN

GPS co-ordinates: N53° 12.1002', W001° 3.7962' 

Crown copyright. All rights reserved 100019713, 2012. Disclaimer and OS copyright.

How to get here

By car and coach

If you are travelling by car you may find the AA Route Planner helpful in planning your route: www.theaa.com/route-planner

Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre is on the B6034 just north of Edwinstowe, between the A6075 and the A616, 20 miles north of Nottingham. Our post code is NG21 9HN.

A road closure order is usually in place for the duration of the Festival, which means that Swinecote Road (B6034) is closed to through traffic. 

By bus

You can get to Edwinstowe on the Sherwood Arrow bus service 33 from Nottingham to Worksop, operated by Stagecoach. For full details, times and prices of bus services check the Traveline website: ww.traveline.info or phone Traveline on 0871 200 2233.

Most buses stop on High Street in Edwinstowe, which is a 5-10 minute walk from the Visitor Centre and park. Buses do not stop at the Visitor Centre during the Festival week as Swinecote Road is closed to through traffic.

By train

The nearest train stations are at Shirebrook (6 miles) and Mansfield (7 miles). Both are served by the Robin Hood Line which is operated by East Midlands Trains.

East Midlands Trains (www.eastmidlandstrains.co.uk) also run services from London St Pancras to Nottingham, and East Coast (www.eastcoast.co.uk) run services from London Kings Cross to Newark.

By bike

Cycling is not allowed in and around the Visitor Centre. Please leave your bikes at the cycle racks in the car park and proceed on foot.

By air

Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre is less than 25 miles from Robin Hood airport and just over 38 miles from East Midlands airport. 

By sea

The nearest ferry port is at Hull, which is 50 miles away.

Parking

The car parking charge is £5 per car (all day).

The Visitor Centre car parks have space for 500 cars. Spaces fill up quickly, so come early. We are unable to reserve parking spaces for cars because the site is so busy. Spaces are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, on the day.

Overflow parking is available at "Naish's Field" across the road and is clearly signed.

No parking is allowed on the roadside verges near the Visitor Centre. Temporary parking restrictions apply in residential streets of the nearby village of Edwinstowe, and motorists ignoring them risk a fine.

Car parking season tickets for Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre are not valid during the Festival.

The main car park barriers close at 5.30pm. There are no barriers on the 'Naish's Field' overflow car parking area across the road.

Coach parking

We are unable to reserve parking spaces for coaches because the site is so busy. Spaces are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, on the day.

Once the coach parking area is full, coaches will be allowed to drop off passengers and then be directed to an off site coach parking area, at the entrance to Thoresby Colliery - a mile or so away. For more details and a map please call 01623 823202, preferably before the week of the event, when phone lines are often jammed with calls.

Opening hours

The park is open from 10am daily with most of the entertainment taking place between 11am and 4pm.
The park closes at 5pm daily and the main car park barriers close at 5.30pm. There are no barriers on the 'Naish's Field' overflow car parking area across the road.

Costs

Entry to the festival is free. Car parking costs £5 per car for the whole day.

Most of the entertainment at the Festival including the jousting tournaments and falconry displays is free.

Charges of between £1 and £3 per person apply to certain optional activities including:

  • Children's theatre performances in the Open Air Theatre
  • 'Have a go' archery
  • Self guided trails - from £1 per leaflet.

See posters and signs on site for full details.

Cashpoints

There are no cashpoints (ATMs) on site and shops at the Visitor Centre cannot give cashback. The nearest cashpoints are in Edwinstowe Village, a 10-15 minute walk from the Visitor Centre, not far from the jousting arena, funfair and cricket ground.

Refreshments and picnics

Meals and snacks are on sale in the Forest Table Restaurant. There's usually also a barbecue in the Visitor Centre throughout each day.

Drinks and ice creams are on sale at the Forest Table Restaurant and usually also from a kiosk by the Major Oak.

If you're planning to bring a picnic, there are a small number of picnic tables near the car park and by the Major Oak. Camping stoves and picnic barbecue grills are not allowed, to protect the ancient woodland from the danger of fire.

Toilets and baby changing

Toilet facilities are available at the Visitor Centre and at the Edwinstowe Art and Craft Centre. There are no toilets by the Major Oak. We do not use portaloos by the Major Oak as it's difficult and expensive to adequately service portaloos in this area. There is an accessible toilet adjoining the Park Ranger's Office which has baby changing facilities. There are also baby changing facilities in the ladies toilets at the Visitor Centre.

Cashpoints

There are no cashpoints (ATMs) on site and shops at the Visitor Centre cannot give cashback. The nearest cashpoints are in Edwinstowe Village, a 10-15 minute walk from the Visitor Centre, not far from the jousting arena, funfair and cricket ground.

Cycling

There are cycle racks in the car park for you to leave your cycle. Cycling and mountain biking is only allowed on the bridleways in the National Nature Reserve - it is not allowed at the Visitor Centre or by the Major Oak.

Dogs

Dogs are welcome at the festival and dog poo bins are provided around the site. Please clean up after your dog otherwise you risk a fine.

As the festival is very busy you must keep your dog on a lead at all times. If your dog is nervous, be aware that there could be large crowds, noise and music.

There are certain activities where dogs are not allowed, e.g. the Walk with Hawks event. If unsure, please check before participating.

Camping

No camping is allowed as the ancient woodland is protected as a National Nature Reserve.

There are several camping and caravan sites in the Sherwood Forest area and farm stays are possible. There is a Youth Hostel at Edwinstowe Village, within walking distance of the Festival site.

Contact the local Tourist Information Centre on 01623 821338 or sherwoodtic@nsdc.info for more information. They are open daily from 10.30am to 4.30pm.

Access for all

Getting around the site involves a fair amount of walking. Parties with young children or less mobile visitors should allow sufficient time for this.

Paths and surfaces

The visitor centre at Sherwood is situated on a level site and is fully accessible for wheelchairs. A number of paths, such as the Major Oak path, are accessible to wheelchairs, but please note that the oak is approximately half a mile from the visitor centre and that there are some slight gradients along the way.

Wheelchair and scooter loan

We offer free loan of wheelchairs. Electric mobility scooters are usually available for hire (deposit and small charge applies).

Accessible buildings

Visitor facilities such as shops and restaurants at Sherwood Forest are accessible for wheelchairs. There are also accessible toilets available.

Access statement

Read our Access Statement for Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre [PDF]

Programme

We may not know exact timings or order of acts until a week or so before the festival so please keep an eye on the website or our Robin Hood Festival Facebook page for updates.

The best place to start your visit to the Festival is at the Visitor Centre. Details of each day's events are displayed just inside the gates and souvenir programmes with daily events listings will also be on sale there.

A mixture of family entertainment with costumed characters, jesters, etc will take place around the site each day from 11am to 4pm. Jousting only takes place on the Wednesday, Saturday on Sunday but whatever day you visit there will be stalls, entertainers and characters around.

Events take place at various locations:

  • The Visitor Centre - where catering, shops and toilets are located
  • Open Air Theatre - a woodland glade 2 minutes walk from the Visitor Centre (follow the signs)
  • The Major Oak - a 10-15 minute walk through the woods from the Visitor Centre
  • Jousting Arena - where the opening ceremony, jousting tournaments and falconry displays take place. This is located near the cricket ground and privately-run fairground at Edwinstowe Village, approximately 15 minutes walk from the Visitor Centre.

Getting around the site involves a fair amount of walking. Parties with young children or less mobile visitors should allow sufficient time for this. Mobility scooters are usually available for hire in the Visitor Centre car park (deposit required and charge payable).

Bad weather

In the event of bad weather the festival will continue but some activities may have to be changed, moved or cancelled. In thunderstorms or very wet weather some events, e.g. the falconry displays and jousting tournaments, must be cancelled for the safety of the animals and people involved.

Wherever possible though, the rest of the entertainment programme will go ahead as planned. Occasionally we have to either move or change an activity but every effort is made to stage at least some of the events, whatever the weather. Bring a raincoat and umbrella and you'll still have fun!

Accommodation

Contact the local Tourist Information Centre for information about accommodation in the area, including hotels, guest houses, camping, farm stays, youth hostels and more.

Tel: 01623 8213387
Email: sherwoodtic@nsdc.info

Tourist Information Centre opening hours are 10.30am to 4.30pm daily.

Other attractions in the area

To find out what else there is to do in the area, visit the Experience Nottinghamshire website: www.experiencenottinghamshire.com

Trade stalls

As a medieval event celebrating Sherwood's legendary outlaw, bouncy castles, exhibition and modern trade stands are not appropriate.
A small number of stalls featuring costumed re-enactors demonstrating traditional medieval crafts form part of a medieval market down by the Major Oak. All spaces for the 2014 event are now booked.

Historic re-enactors/historical craftspeople interested in taking part in future events should email: sherwood.forest@nottscc.gov.uk or telephone 01623 823202 and ask for the site manager. Please be aware that we usually receive many more requests than we are able to accommodate.

Sponsorship

If you would be interested in being a headline sponsor, jousting arena sponsor or advertising in our festival programme, see our advertising and sponsorship page for more information. 

Advertising

Advertising for the Robin Hood Festival is planned and booked by the County Council's Communications and Marketing Team. For enquiries please contact the Council's Customer Service Centre on 0300 500 8080. However, there is a very limited budget for this free event which is always fully committed well in advance and cold calls selling advertising will be rejected.

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