After a hearty breakfast we walked over to explore Lincoln Castle with its high ramparts and expansive views in all directions across Lincolnshire and the Trent valley. William the Conqueror began building the castle in 1068 on the site of previous Roman and Saxon occupation and eventually used it to hold hostages. For the next 900 years the Castle has continued to be used as a court and prison and today still is the home of the county court, which was in session during our visit.
|the rear of the court house, built in 1822|
|Georgian Prison Building|
It’s rooms and corridors now tell the story of the foundation of justice in Medieval England and how the Magna Carta came into being on the banks of The Thames at Runnymede in 1215. King John reneged on the commitments he signed up to pretty quickly after its signature but it was re-issued, along with the Charter of the Forest a few years later and formed the basis of the rights of the people in democratic countries to this day.
In contrast to the establishment of the rights of man, the Victorian Prison to the rear contained the only remaining example of a ‘separate system’ chapel where prisoners were isolated in coffin like pews, unable to see each other before, during or after the service.
Our morning perambulation completed, we jumped in the car and headed north in gorgeous sunshine. We crossed the Humber Bridge and pressed on to our next destination – Flamborough Head on the Yorkshire coast and a date with the seabirds that nest there.