“For the first time ever, I now whistle on the way to work” says Jimmy
Alnwick Castle has recruited over 100 new staff for 2019 from 300 applications. The eager new employees range from teenagers to retired people and all ages in between.
Since early March the newcomers have been learning all about the life and times of the Castle – past and present – as well as receiving specific training for their individual roles.
Now that the Castle is open to visitors, the intake of 2019 is more than ready to get going!
The new roles range from retail and admin assistants to kitchen workers, visitor services, admissions personnel and tour guides. The food outlets have been upgraded and enlarged at Alnwick Castle this year so many more catering personnel have been recruited.
Although all the jobs here are enjoyable and highly sought after, the most coveted roles at Alnwick Castle are usually the resident performers and historical interpreters who wow the crowds every year with their talent, passion and ability to bring history to life. And this year has been no exception.
Many performers and guides enjoy their work at the Castle so much that they return year after year. New activities and events every year mean that all staff – seasonal and permanent – are trained continually.
During the run up to opening, some of the new recruits were being trained in sword fighting by Mark Vance Historical Entertainments. Mark runs exciting medieval combat workshops at Alnwick Castle and regularly works on TV and film productions as well as in schools and stately homes throughout the UK.
Highlights of the 2019 season at Alnwick Castle include the colourful Alnwick Castle Joust at the end of May and the thrilling Joust of the North in late August. Several Harry Potter Wizarding Weeks and Wizard Weekends will be held throughout the season and of course broomstick training will take place every day until the end of October.
As usual, every day from 29th March until 27th October, you’ll find an amazing array of activities to enjoy, including the highly popular film location tours, broomstick training, and scary Dragons Quest (only for the very brave). Little children in particular – and sometimes grown-ups too – love the medieval dress-up, games and craft-making in Artisans Courtyard.
Throughout the season, you will encounter a mix of exciting entertainment including Peterkin the Jester, Trouvere Minstrels, Birds of Prey, Knights School, Archery and military firing drills with the Percy Tenantry Volunteers.
For history fans, you can tour the incredible State Rooms with an engaging and knowledgeable guide, hear stories from the long and eventful history of Alnwick Castle as you walk the grounds, or enjoy a 10 minute talk on a variety of different historical figures or objects from the Alnwick Castle collection.
There are a variety of fascinating on-site museums and exhibitions. Constable’s Tower; the Northumberland Fusiliers Exhibition; the Antiquities Museum and the Unrolling History exhibition, have all been recently restored and offer a wealth of easily accessible information and fascinating facts on the Castle and Northumberland’s turbulent past.
All activities are free with admission. For more information on Alnwick Castle please visit www.alnwickcastle.com or call 01665 511 100