Raby

Updated 18th September 2020

We are OPEN!

Following the announcement of regional restrictions for the North East of England we can confirm that Raby Castle and High Force Hotel and Waterfall remain open. We are following the latest government guidance to ensure that all visitors have a safe and enjoyable experience when visiting us.

Please be aware that the outdoor seating areas at Raby Castle are currently closed in line with the latest government guidance.

We were among the first to receive the Good to Go certification from Visit England in recognition of the measures we have taken to meet government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, and we continue to uphold these high standards to keep our visitors, staff and volunteers safe.

For further details please watch our reopening video and read our FAQs which provide the latest information about the measures we are taking to keep everyone safe.

We kindly ask that if you are feeling unwell with Covid-19 symptoms that you stay at home and visit us at a time when you are well.

We hope to see you at Raby Castle and High Force soon.

Track and Trace

From the 18th September 2020 all visitors to Raby Castle and High Force Hotel and Waterfall will be asked to provide their contact details in order for us to support the Track and Trace programme, should anyone develop Covid-19 symptoms following their visit. All visitors purchasing tickets on arrival, or visiting our refreshment kiosks will be asked to provide their contact details.

 

 

CORONAVIRUS AND RE-OPENING FAQS

 

RABY CASTLE, PARK AND GARDENS 

(for High Force FAQs please scroll down the page)

Gatherings of six people

By law, social gatherings of more than six people in England will not be allowed from Monday 14th September 2020. Please be aware that from this date we will not be able to admit groups of more than six people at either Raby Castle or at High Force Hotel and Waterfall. We reserve the right to refuse entry to groups of more than six people. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

What’s open and what are your opening times?

We are continuing to take a gradual approach to reopening our facilities, and opening times may vary – please check before you travel. If you have visited us before things will be a bit different, but we are working hard to make sure that your experience with us is both safe and enjoyable.

The Deer Park, Walled Gardens and Woodland Play Area at Raby Castle are open daily from 10am – 4pm.

Raby Castle will open Wednesday – Sunday from 11am – 4pm. A one-way system is in place for visitors to the Castle to support social distancing. Tickets are limited to enable us to safely manage visitor numbers and must be pre-booked online.

What catering is available?

Our Kiosk is open, offering a limited takeaway grab and go menu as well as a selection of cakes, snacks, and drinks. All food and drink at Raby Castle is served in disposable containers at this time.

Do I need to wear a mask when I visit?

Visitors will need to wear a face mask in the Castle.

Do I need to book to visit?

You will need to purchase a ticket to visit Raby Castle, Park and Gardens. To help us manage the number of visitors on site, and to limit contact with staff, we would prefer visitors to book tickets for the day of their visit before they arrive.  Limited tickets will be available to purchase on the day (subject to availability), and for your safety and ours we are accepting card payments only. Annual Pass Holders need to book and will be expected to show their pass on arrival.

If you are planning to visit the Castle you will need to pre-book your tickets online as tickets are limited for each day.

Please be aware we are committed to supporting the NHS Track and Trace programme. All visitors to Raby Castle will be asked to provide their contact details in order for us to support the Track and Trace programme, should anyone develop Covid-19 symptoms following their visit.

Are the toilets open?

Reduced toilet facilities, including disabled toilets and baby change facilities, are open.  Measures have been put in place to limit the number of visitors accessing the toilets at any time. Please use the hand sanitiser provided and queue at a safe distance from others.

Please note there are no toilet facilities for visitors in the Castle at this time.

Can we bring picnics?

As our outdoor seating areas are now closed in line with the latest government guidance, you are welcome to enjoy your own picnics and food purchased from our Refreshment Kiosk in the Deer Park. We ask that visitors do not take picnics into the Walled Gardens. Please dispose of litter responsibly, using the bins provided.

Can I bring my dog?

Well behaved dogs are welcome in the Park and Gardens at Raby Castle. Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times. 

Is the site accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs?

The Deer Park has wide tarmac paths which are suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs. There are benches throughout the Park where visitors can sit and rest to take in the views.

The Gardens are situated on a natural slope. Paths are surfaced with gravel and most steps have handrails. The upper section of the garden can be accessed along a path on one level and there are benches throughout to sit and enjoy the views. You can see this pathway on our Virtual Tour of the Gardens – select the Garden option from the drop down menu. Wheelchairs users may need assistance from a strong and able pusher.

We are unable to provide wheelchairs or mobility scooters.

Accessibility inside the Castle is limited, due to the historical nature of the building, therefore we are happy to charge visitors with disabilities concessionary rates.

Are you offering timed tickets for the Castle?

We are offering a morning and afternoon session for visitors to the Castle, and are limiting the number of Castle tickets on sale each day to help us safely manage numbers on site. Tickets for the Castle must be pre-booked online. We are closely monitoring the number of visitors in each space, and so you may be asked to wait before moving through to the next area.

Will you be offering guided tours?

We will be offering guided tours of the Castle Terrace throughout the summer, on Mondays and Tuesday when the Castle is closed. Tickets for these tours are limited to a maximum of 5 people in line with current government guidance. Further details will be released soon.

We are not offering guided tours of the Castle interiors at this time.  However, our room guides will be on hand to answer questions and share the fascinating stories of the Castle with visitors.

Are there any events happening at Raby Castle?

We are always looking at new and exciting ways for visitors to enjoy our fabulous spaces. Join us for our Autumn Sundays each week during September and October when we will have soft music and lanterns in the Walled Gardens. Normal admission prices apply.  To be the first to hear about our plans and latest news you can  sign up to our newsletter.

You can also keep an eye on our Whats On pages.

What have you put in place to keep visitors and staff safe?

Raby Castle is proud to have been awarded Good to Go Certification from Visit England in recognition of the steps we have taken to follow government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, ensuring processes are in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social/physical distancing.

The health and wellbeing of our staff and visitors is our top priority.  We have been working closely with our teams to make sure that we have put all necessary measures in place to protect our staff and visitors. We have also been gathering feedback from our annual pass holders to find out what measures they would like to see as we re-open.

Measures include:

  • Limited tickets to safely manage the number of visitors on site at any time
  • New signage and clear social distancing guidance at both locations
  • Personal protective equipment for staff
  • Take-away refreshments – perspex screens have been installed at our ticketing and refreshment kiosks
  • Strict hygiene processes for the cleaning of toilet facilities, picnic areas and other parts of the site
  • Measures to limit numbers accessing the toilets at one time
  • Additional sanitiser stations around the sites and pop up handwashing facilities in picnic areas
  • We are accepting card payments only to minimise contact, with contactless payments preferred

Why are you only re-opening in a limited way?

We are following the latest Government guidance about the safe and gradual re-opening of our facilities.  Re-opening gradually and in a limited way will enable us to monitor and review our procedures to ensure the safety of visitors and staff, and to manage visitor numbers safely.

If you are planning to visit please check our website for the latest opening times and prices.

I am a member of Historic Houses/Yorkshire’s Great Houses, Castles and Gardens – do I have to pay? 

Historic Houses members and members of Yorkshire’s Great Houses, Castles and Gardens can visit for free – please bring your membership card with you as you will need to show this on arrival.

 


HIGH FORCE HOTEL AND WATERFALL

Gatherings of six people

By law, social gatherings of more than six people in England will not be allowed from Monday 14th September 2020. Please be aware that from this date we will not be able to admit groups of more than six people at either Raby Castle or at High Force Hotel and Waterfall. We reserve the right to refuse entry to groups of more than six people. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

What’s open and what are your opening times?

We are continuing to take a gradual approach to reopening our facilities, and opening times may vary – please check before you travel. If you have visited us before things will be a bit different, but we are working hard to make sure that your experience with us is both safe and enjoyable.

High Force Waterfall and Car Park is open daily from 10 am, with last entry at 4 pm. A new circular route is in place to support social distancing. Please be aware that the gate from the viewing platform down to the water’s edge is currently closed to enable us to safely manage social distancing. The Hotel and Restaurant are open Wednesday to Sunday.

Do I need to book to visit?

If you are visiting High Force Waterfall you will need a Waterfall ticket which can be purchased from our website. Parking charges apply at High Force, and can be added when you book your admission tickets online.

High Force Hotel is open for bookings and the tables can be booked in the restaurant from Wednesday to Sunday. Sunday lunch is served between 12 noon and 4pm. Please contact the team on 01833 622336 for all room and table reservations.

Do I have to wear a mask in the Hotel?

Anyone visiting the Hotel must wear a mask in all communal areas. Face coverings should be worn at all times, but may be removed when seated at a table to dine or when you are in your hotel room.

Are you offering table service?

At High Force we are offering table service only in the Hotel at this time. Guests dining with us are asked to remain at their table unless going to the toilet.

Tables are limited and booking is advised – please call us on 01833 622336 to make a reservation. Tables at the entrance to the Hotel are not in use at this time to allow safe social distancing for our guests and staff.

Takeaway food and drink is available to purchase from the Kiosk at High Force.

Are the toilets open?

Toilet facilities are open and measures have been put in place to limit the number of visitors accessing the toilets at any time. Please use the hand sanitiser provided and queue at a safe distance from others.

Can we bring picnics?

Picnic areas are located next to the car park. We ask that visitors do not take picnics down to High Force Waterfall. Please dispose of litter responsibly, in the bins provided.

Can I bring my dog?

Well behaved dogs are welcome at High Force Waterfall and High Force Hotel. Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times.

Is it accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs?

We have created a circular route at High Force to enable greater social distancing for visitors.

The circular route is an enjoyable yet challenging walk, however it is not accessible, and is unsuitable for pushchairs.  The path is narrow in places; therefore, we ask that you do not bring pushchairs at this time. Please ensure suitable footwear is worn as the terrain is changeable with the weather.

What have you put in place to keep visitors and staff safe?

High Force Hotel is proud to have been awarded Good to Go Certification from Visit England in recognition of the steps we have taken to follow government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, ensuring processes are in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social/physical distancing.

The health and wellbeing of our staff and visitors is our top priority.  We have been working closely with our teams to make sure that we have put all necessary measures in place to protect our staff and visitors. Measures include:

  • New signage and clear social distancing
  • Take-away refreshments – perspex screens have been installed at our ticketing and refreshment kiosks
  • Strict hygiene processes for the cleaning of toilet facilities, picnic and other areas
  • Measures to limit numbers accessing the toilets at one time
  • Additional sanitiser stations around the sites and pop up handwashing facilities in picnic areas
  • We are accepting card payments only to minimise contact, with contactless payments preferred
  • We have created a circular route to enable greater social distancing, when visitors walk to see the waterfall. There is a new path which you should use for your return journey, to avoid passing other pedestrians. Please adhere to the one-way system where possible to do so. The circular route is steep in places and is not suitable for less mobile visitors  or pushchairs.  As the path is narrow in places we ask visitors not to bring pushchairs at this time.
  • At certain times of year we close the gateway at the bottom of the waterfall walk for the safety of our visitors and staff.

Why are you only re-opening in a limited way?

We are following the latest Government guidance about the safe and gradual re-opening of our facilities.  Re-opening gradually and in a limited way will enable us to monitor and review our procedures to ensure the safety of visitors and staff, and to manage visitor numbers safely.

If you are planning to visit please check our website for the latest opening times and prices.

What are you doing to mitigate the impact of visitors coming to your sites and the surrounding area?

We know that residents in our communities are understandably concerned about the number of visitors coming to the area.  We have seen an increase in the number of visitors coming since restrictions on travel and exercise were relaxed and are aware of the impact this is having in the local area.

We are working closely with partners at North Pennines AONB and Durham County Council to take a collective approach to re-opening limited facilities, to try and ease some of the pressure that has been felt by the local community.  Car parks and facilities have been re-opened gradually in discussion with Durham Police.

We are limiting the number of visitors on site at any time, and have put comprehensive social distancing measures in place, as well as providing additional handwashing and sanitisation facilities. We have created a circular route to enable greater social distancing, when visitors walk to see the waterfall. There is a new path which visitors should use to return to the car park, to avoid passing other pedestrians.

Visitors are reminded to behave responsibly when visiting our locations for the safety of our team, other visitors, and residents.

How can I contact you if I have a question about visiting?

If you have a question about visiting us please get in touch by email – admin@raby.co.uk

We are a small team and will endeavour to respond to your messages as soon as possible.

Raby Castle, Park, Gardens, Shop and Café – 01833 660202

High Force Hotel and Waterfall – 01833 622336

 

Tenants who need to contact the Estate Offices for whatever reason should do so in the normal way.

Raby Estate Office, Co Durham – 01833 660888

Raby Estate Office, Shropshire – 01952 740223

I can’t visit at the moment – how can I keep up to date with what is happening?

We know not everyone will be able to visit us as we reopen.  We will continue to share updates about what’s happening across the Estate on our blog and social media pages.

For the latest news follow us on:

Facebook (Raby Castle)             Facebook (High Force Hotel and Waterfall)

Twitter (Raby Castle)                 Twitter (High Force Hotel and Waterfall)

Instagram (Raby Castle)            Instagram (High Force Hotel and Waterfall)

You can also subscribe to our newsletter for further information and updates.

We will continue to review the measures we have put in place and if you have any feedback you would like to share with us please email admin@raby.co.uk

 

We are OPEN! We are following the latest government guidance to keep our visitors, staff and volunteers safe. Click HERE to read our latest update.