Tynemouth Priory and Castle

School Visits

Discover 2000 years of history at Tynemouth Castle and Priory, on a free education visit with your class. Overlooking the North Sea and the River Tyne, Tynemouth dominates the headland, and since its origin as an Iron Age settlement, the site has been an Anglo Saxon monastery, a medieval monastery, a royal castle and a costal defence.

Curriculum links

Step back in time and explore the varied history of Tynemouth Castle and Priory, with curriculum links to History and Geography.

  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in the locality
  • KS1-2 Geography: Geographical skills and fieldwork
  • KS2 History: Britain’s settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots: Anglo-Saxon art and culture, Christian conversion. A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils' chronological knowledge beyond 1066
  • KS2 Geography: Human geography: Types of settlement and land use
  • KS2-3 History: A local history study
  • KS3 History: Development of Church, state and society in Medieval Britain 1066-1509: Christendom, the importance of religion. Development of Church, state and society in Britain 1509-1745: The English Reformation. Challenges for Britain, Europe and the wider world 1901 to the present day: First World War, Second World War

Free Self-Led Visits

Book a free self-led visit to discover the varied and rich history of Tynemouth Castle and Priory with your class. Once one of the largest fortified areas in England, you can follow the history of this site from the Iron Age, through to an Anglo Saxon monastery, a medieval monastery fortified against Scottish attack, and a coastal Tudor fort. Having survived the English Civil War, the site was later upgraded with anti aircraft guns and radar to defend the coastline during the First and Second World Wars. Today you can explore the castle and priory, visit a beautiful 15th century chapel, and see the restored gun battery and cannon.

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Plan your visit

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. You can find all our site-specific information and tools below, and further information on our what to expect page.

Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip. We also offer free planning visits once you have made a booking, plus a 20% discount on the official English Heritage guidebook for your place of choice.

Once you book your visit you’ll be sent a visit permit, which you’ll need to bring with you on the day.

Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip!

  • Facilities
    • SITE: Majority of the site is open and accessible, however the gun battery and the upper levels of the keep are closed.
    • PARKING: To access disabled drivers' car park (10 cars), drive up causeway from Front Street, through castle gatehouse and turn right. Visitors parking in village face a 150m uphill walk and 70m of cobbles at gatehouse. Ticket office is in gatehouse. There is additional pay and display parking at the Spanish Battery and along the coastal road which leads to Tynemouth.
    • TOILETS: Toilets are available.
    • LUNCH: You are welcome to bring your own packed lunches. There are picnic benches, grass and a small sheltered garden.
    • SHOP: There is limited shop capacity. Please bring your students in small supervised groups of up to 5.
    • EXHIBITION: The interactive 'Life in the Stronghold' exhibition (located in the Warrant Officer's House) takes visitors on a journey from Tynemouth's beginnings as an Anglo-Saxon settlement, a medieval monastery and Tudor fortification, right up to its importance as a WWII coastal gun battery. We recommend bringing your pupils in small groups.
  • Hazard Information

    A useful tool to help with your risk assessments. 


    You must meet the following ratios for leaders to students on the day of your visit when booking, and if your group is forming smaller groups while at the site:

    • Ages 4-5 (UK Reception) 1 leader for every 4 students (1:4)
    • Ages 5-7 (UK Key Stage 1) 1 leader for every 6 students (1:6)
    • Ages 7-11 (UK Key Stage 2) 1 leader for every 10 students (1:10) and
    • Ages 11-18 (UK Key Stages 3, 4, and 5) 1 leader for every 15 students (1:15)
    • For an adult learning group, consisting of individuals all over the age of 18, there are no ratios but there must be an appointed group leader
    • All ratios outlined above apply to home education groups
    • If your group consists of children aged 3 and/or 4, you must also refer to the Early Years and Foundation Stage Statutory Framework which sets out specific legal requirements for minimum ratios for this age group, to include requirements about the qualifications of the leaders
    • SEND groups must meet the minimum ratios above but may bring any additional leaders as required to adequately support their group
  • Education Site Opening Times

    We offer free self-led education visits during school term time*

    *Free education visits are not offered on UK public holidays or during the operation of additional fee paying public events at English Heritage sites.

    • April-5 November: Monday-Sunday 10-5pm
    • 6 November-16 February: Saturday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • 17 February-25 February: Monday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • 26 February-28 March: Saturday-Sunday 10-4pm

Learning Resources

  • Teaching Medieval History

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of medieval history.

  • A Mini Guide to Castles

    ​Discover how castles developed over time with this short introduction.

  • A Mini Guide to Medieval Monks

    Find out more about different medieval monastic orders with our short animation.

  • Teaching the 20th Century

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of 20th century history.