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Edwinstowe

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Edwinstowe[1], in Nottinghamshire in the East Midlands region of England, is where Robin Hood allegedly had his camp in Sherwood Forest. The local church, St.Mary's, claims to be where he married Maid Marion. Surrounded by all that remains of Sherwood Forest, Edwinstowe is now an ex-pit village with 5000 inhabitants and a thriving tourist industry.

Get in[edit]

For a small town, there are a remarkable number of ways to get to Edwinstowe.

By car[edit]

From Nottingham (20 miles) take the A614 north. From Mansfield (10 miles) the A6075 east. From Newark (England) (11 miles) the A616 west and from Retford (10 miles) take the A1 south.

By train[edit]

Nearest station is Newark Northgate (on the east coast main line) or Mansfield Woodhouse (on the local Robin Hood line).

By bus[edit]

Stagecoach bus services 33 and 36 connect Retford and Nottingham via Edwinstowe. Bus service 15 leaves from Mansfield to Ollerton via Edwinstowe.

By plane[edit]

Small local airstrip at Gamston (near Retford). Nearest major airport is East Midlands Airport about 35 miles to the south-west.

Get around[edit]

Edwinstowe is a pretty small place so walking is the method of choice. Local taxi services will take you further (but get them to quote you a price before travelling). It is possible to hire bikes from Center Parcs (if you are a resident).

The local council seem to have realized people want to visit the forest so charge appallingly high prices for the car park. If you have a car, it is best to park on the rather twee newish housing estate that backs on to the forest and walk through an alley by the Youth Hostel. Paddock Close (a weird name as there is no paddock and it's not a "close" i.e. cul-de-sac) is the best place to park - although avoid the locals who seem to be constantly mowing the lawn, washing their car, or sweeping the drive in order to keep an eye on you.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Sherwood Forest and the Major Oak. Robin Hood's old haunt.
  • St Mary's Church. A rather nice ancient church where Robin Hood and Maid Marion were supposedly married.
  • The Cricket. At the weekends during the summer.
  • Rufford Park, about three miles south of Edwinstowe. Connected to D.H. Lawrence, this park has a funky sculpture garden.
  • Clumber Park. Run by the UK's National Trust, this park has a beautiful lake.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Fun Fair. All the rides involve sitting on something that goes around a track of only two meters radius and cost at least a pound.
  • Sherwood Pines [2] (run by the Forestry Commission). You can "Go Ape" (yes, thats what they call it) on a harness and swing around a large assault course suspended in the treetops. A recently built adventure playground for kids is also excellent if you're taking a family. Sherwood Pines also host rock concerts with quite good acts (check their website).
  • Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre. Can get very busy but includes quite an interesting walk-around display about the forest's history and ecosystem. The forest near the Visitor Centre is quite busy but the routes are well sign-posted. Off the beaten track is a lot quieter with beautiful quiet glades and mysterious paths - but make sure you take a map and know where you're going (the locals often know the best routes to take).

Buy[edit][add listing]

Lots of Robin Hood dross in all the local shops. If you like "tat" you'll be in heaven. The local craft center (near the forest) also sells "stuff" of variable quality by local artisans.

Rufford Park has a shop with a large selection of rather cool (and sometimes grotesque) pottery.

Eat[edit][add listing]

As well as one Indian and two Chinese take-aways (on the High Street):

  • Forest Lodge. Pub with an OK restaurant serving passable bar food -- meat, chips, and a round of vegetables.
  • Robin Hood's Plaice [sic]. A fish and chip shop.
  • Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre. Snack food.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Edwinstowe contains no less than eleven pubs, most of which are on the High Street.

  • The Forest Lodge (See above at the main crossroads)
  • The Manvers Arms (On the newish housing estate)
  • The Royal Oak (At the main crossroads)
  • Ye Olde Jug and Glass [3] (High Street - parking at rear)
  • The Black Swan (High Street)
  • The Wedge (Just off the left of the bottom of the high street)
  • The Miners Welfare (On the avenues estate)
  • Ma' Hubbard's (Formerly the Dukeries Hotel)
  • South Forest (At the crossroads at the south end of the village)
  • Robin Hood (At the crossroads at the south end of the village)
  • Rose Cottage (Near Centre Parcs on the A614)

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Although there are various B&Bs dotted around the village the Youth Hostel is probably the best option in terms of value-for-money and facilities.

  • Sherwood Forest Youth Hostel, Forest Corner (at Church Street), 01623 825794 (fax: 01623 825796, sherwood@yha.org.uk). 1PM. Room for 39, family bunk rooms available. £8.50-£12.50 (child-adult).
  • Center Parcs [4], a mile south of Edinstowe. Holiday village, more posh than the hostel. It contains a domed faux-tropical swimming pool with chutes and a wave machine, as well as a lake for sailing and windsurfing. Prices in the stores in the holiday village are a lot higher than those found a mile away in Edwinstowe's Co-op superstore shop.
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