Lancaster Georgian weekend.
Georgian Lancaster was the theme of this year’s Lancaster Unlocked Festival that took place over the past few days.
Some 250 Georgian buildings still stand in Lancaster city today as well as the monumental aqueduct built by John Rennie that carries the Lancaster canal over the River Lune. This year’s festival saw the city’s historic buildings and other venues open to celebrate this heritage with a variety of events providing different views of local history and the chance to explore new places.
One highlight of the weekend was the chance to see inside the gates of Lancaster Castle, which was until fairly recently used as a court and prison.
Brief history of Lancaster Castle (taken from http://www.lancastercastle.com)
The medieval castle occupies a city-centre hilltop location on the site of three successive Roman forts. It consists of an extensive group of historic structures, including the 12th Century Keep, the 14th Century Witches’ Tower, the 15the Century Gatehouse, and the Female Penitentiary, which dates from the early years of the 19th Century. It is a Grade I Listed Building, with the area to the north of it designated as a Scheduled Ancient Monument.In the 16th Century it housed one of England’s most famous trials involving The Pendle Witches, which saw 10 people found guilty of “making a covenant with an evil spirit, using a corpse for magic, hurting life or limb, procuring love, or injuring cattle by means of charms”. They were sentenced to death and hanged on the moor above Lancaster.
English Heritage has described the Castle as being, “not only the North-West’s most important historic and archaeological monument but also of international importance”.