Heritage and history

text with image | Heritage and History Gainsborough
Photograph of a small stone statue of a pilgrim woman. Taken in front of the fence by the River Trent in Gainsborough.

Gainsborough has a fascinating past that dates to the 9th century with numerous historical links. The jewel in the crown is the immaculately preserved medieval manor house, Gainsborough Old Hall, dating from the 15th century and boasting a succession of famous visitors, including Richard III and Henry VIII.

The town also has links to the Mayflower Pilgrims and a sculpture of a Pilgrim Woman stands on the River Trent as a reminder of this significant story. 

As you walk around the town, you will notice blue plaques which have been erected to highlight significant historical links and the role the River Trent played in the expansion of the town.

Gainsborough Heritage Centre, on the corner of North Street, also offers a fascinating insight to the history of the town with exhibitions and period displays. 

For places to visit and things to do visit Discover Gainsborough. You can also follow the heritage trail which takes you round some of the most iconic sites of the town. 

text with image | Heritage and History Caistor
A photograph of a woman at Caistor Arts and Heritage Centre. She is looking at a display of photographs and books depicting the town's history.

Caistor was originally a hill fort for early Britons and was developed into a stronghold by the Romans. Named after the Latin "castra" meaning “camp” the town was encircled by a massive wall which is still visible on the southern boundary of St Peter & St Paul’s Church.

Caistor was also involved in the 1536 Lincolnshire Rising, plus other notable disasters including the Plague in 1590 where 36 victims are recorded; and a disastrous fire in 1681 that destroyed the town square.

Caistor Arts & Heritage Centre tells the history of the town and the heritage trail also offers a fascinating insight. The Secret Stories app also allows you to explore the fascinating history of Caistor. Designed by Ordinance Survey, this easy to use app has step by step instructions plus fascinating stories to read along the way.

For places to visit and things to do visit Love Lincolshire Wolds website.

text with image | Heritage and History Market Rasen
Photograph taken of the entrance to the Market Rasen Station and Heritage Rooms.

Market Rasen has a rich heritage with many stories just waiting to be discovered; some of which can be found in the town's Heritage Tour.

Market Rasen still retains much of the character of its nineteenth century heyday, and the town has stories dating back to pre-Roman times. This interactive tour allows you to explore the area and delve into some of the fascinating stories behind the buildings and locations you see today.

The Old Police Station and Magistrates’ Court is also a grade II listed building which dates back to 1849; and there has also been a church building on the grounds of the Parish Church of St Thomas for over 800 years, with written evidence dating back to the mid-12th century. The town is also famous as Lincolnshire’s only racecourse with racing taking place within the town since the 1800s. 

For places to visit and things to do visit Love Lincolnshire Wolds website.

text | Heritage and History

West Lindsey Churches Guide

A new publication is now available promoting one of West Lindsey’s most beautiful assets. The West Lindsey Churches Guide [pdf / 3 MB] has been produced by Destination Lincolnshire, supported by West Lindsey District Council, and promotes some of the area’s most magnificent churches, chapels, ministers and meeting houses. 

Plan a day out and visit some remarkable churches steeped in history, some with quirky stories too. Whilst you're out and about, you can also visit the area’s historic market towns, Caistor, Gainsborough and Market Rasen, not to mention the stunning Lincolnshire Wolds.  

Copies of the guide can also be requested by emailing tourism.info@west-lindsey.gov.uk