Yarmouth Castle

School Visits

Yarmouth Castle was finished in 1547. It was designed to protect Yarmouth harbour, and in conjunction with Hurst Castle on the mainland, it also defended the western end of the Solent against any invasion fleets. This was the last and most sophisticated of Henry VIII’s series of coastal forts, with a new square shape and the first ‘arrowhead’ style artillery bastion built in England. Yarmouth Castle has a long history of military use: it was garrisoned until 1885 and was used in both of the World Wars.

Curriculum links

Visit Yarmouth Castle to support your teaching in a fun and engaging way, and cover multiple topics across the curriculum.

  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in the locality
  • KS1 English and Drama: To speak clearly, fluently and confidently to different people. To listen, understand and respond to others
  • KS2 History: A local history study. 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, identify the manmade defensive features of the site
  • KS3 History: A local history study. The development of Church, state and society in Britain 1509–1745. Ideas, political power, industry and empire in Britain 1745–1901. Challenges for Britain, Europe and the wider world 1901 to the present day
  • KS3 Geography: Understand the key processes in human geography; understand how human and physical processes interact to influence and change landscapes

Free self-led visits

Book a free self-led visit, and organise your day to suit your curriculum needs. Explore the castle at your own pace, spot the model canon and step inside the rooms to discover how they were used in the 16th century. Visit the exhibition to learn about how and why Yarmouth Castle was built and about the many shipwrecks that occurred in the sea overlooked by it: a perfect theme for a creative project back in the classroom. Dress up in costumes and use our handling collection to discover more about life in the Tudor period. Outside, look out over views of the harbour, and imagine how different the scene might have looked in the time of Henry VIII when the castle was first built.

Find out more

Plan Your Trip

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
    • PARKING: The car park is located 200 meters away from the site, adjacent to the Wightlink ferry port. Visitors will need to cross a busy road to access the site. It is a coin-operated pay and display car park that is not managed by English Heritage. A coach park is also located 200 meters away from the site. There is some limited free car parking in the town with a maximum of 1 hour stay.
    • LUNCH: You are very welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the grounds.
    • TOILETS: Unfortunately there are no toilet facilities on site. The nearest public toilets are less than 5 minutes’ walk away, next to the pier.
    • SHOP: There is a shop selling a selection of Yarmouth Castle souvenirs and English Heritage gifts. Please take your class in supervised small groups.
    • EXHIBITION: Displays inside the castle recreate how the rooms were used in the 16th century, and an exhibition about the many wrecks which occurred in ‘Yarmouth Roads’, the treacherous stretch of sea which the castle overlooks. Exhibition is located on the first floor, currently no disabled access 
  • 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-October: Monday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • November-March: Monday-Sunday 10-4pm
  • Teaching Tudors and Stuarts

    This guide to teaching Tudors and Stuarts includes advice from our educational experts and historians as well as suggested activities to try with your students in the classroom or on a school trip. 

  • A Mini Guide to Castles

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