Lichfield Things to Do

  • The Garrick Theatre.
    The Garrick Theatre.
    by IreneMcKay
  • Tudor Row
    Tudor Row
    by IreneMcKay
  • Tudor Row
    Tudor Row
    by IreneMcKay

Most Recent Things to Do in Lichfield

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    The House of Erasmus Darwin

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

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    Erasmus Darwin House is close to Lichfield Cathedral. It is now a museum and herb garden. Dr Erasmus Darwin was a scientist, doctor, inventor, poet, botanist. He was the grandfather of Charles Darwin.

    House of Erasmus Darwin.
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    Museum Gardens

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    Museum Gardens opened as a public park in 1859. It is a pretty park with a fountain - Chancellor Law's Fountain - and several interesting statues. The statues include Erasmus Darwin, John Smith - the Captain of the Titanic and King Edward VII.

    Captain of the Titanic The fountain King Edward VII and library Fountain Cathedral from park.
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    Stowe Pool

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    Stowe Pool is not far from the cathedral. Stowe Pool dates from the 11th century when a dam and mill were constructed across Leamonsley Brook. Nowadays Stowe Pool is a pleasant place for a stroll. The Church of St Chad is located on the pool. This church dates from the twelfth century.

    St Chad's Church Stowe Pool.
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    Lichfield Cathedral

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    Lichfield Cathedral is an extremely beautiful building with three distinctive spires. The facade of the building is covered with images of saints and fearsome gargoyles and even a statue of King Charles II.

    Lichfield Cathedral is dedicated to Saint Chad. Chad became Bishop of Mercia in 669 and moved his See to Lichfield. After Chad's death in 672 many pilgrims began to come to his shrine. In 700 Bishop Hedda built a new church to house Chad's bones. Over time this church was continually changing. First from a Saxon church to a Norman Cathedral. Then from a Norman Cathedral to a Gothic one.

    Lichfield Cathedral was severely damaged during the English Civil War. In the 1660s it was restored by Bishop Hacket. Later Sir George Gilbert Scott restored the cathedral between 1855 and 1878.

    The cathedral has wonderful stain glass windows and beautiful carvings. In its treasury you can find some items from the Staffordshire hoard and the beautiful Lichfield Angel.

    Lichfield Cathedral Lichfield Cathedral The Lichfield Angel Lichfield Cathedral Lichfield Cathedral
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    The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    Samuel Johnson was born in Lichfield in 1709. His father, Michael Johnson was a book seller and the ground floor of the house Johnson was born in was his father's bookshop. Now the whole house is a free entry museum. It covers five floors. There is a kitchen in the basement, a bookshop and display rooms on the ground floor. One of the rooms upstairs plays a video about Johnson's life. There is the room Johnson was born in and the room where he created his famous dictionary. Johnson lived in this house for the first twenty-seven years of his life and frequently returned there until his death in 1784.

    The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson The Birthplace of Samuel Johnson
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    Market and Statues

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    There is a bustling market next to St Mary's Church in Lichfield. Personally, I especially liked the pottery stall.

    Market Square is right next to the birthplace of Samuel Johnson and contains a statue of Johnson and a statue of his life-long friend and biographer James Boswell.

    James Boswell in front of St Mary's Church. Samuel Johnson visits the market.
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    St Mary's Church

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    St Mary's Church is located in the historic centre of Lichfield next to the market. The current church dates from 1870 though there have been other churches on this site since the twelfth century. In the 1980s this church took on a variety of new roles as a tourist information centre, a cafe, a heritage museum. The church still holds religious services in a small chapel at its northern end. This chapel has lovely stain glass windows and beautiful paintings.

    St Mary's Church. The Annunciation.
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    Tudor Row

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    Tudor Row is an attractive shopping street which links Bore Street to Wade Street and thus links Lichfield's old and new towns. Tudor Row was very colourful and all decorated with bunting during our visit

    Tudor Row Tudor Row Tudor Row
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    The Garrick Theatre

    by IreneMcKay Written Sep 4, 2014

    The Garrick Theatre in Lichfield is called after famous British actor David Garrick, who lived in Lichfield and for a time studied there as a pupil of Samuel Johnson. It is modern theatre with a 530 seats auditorium and a 140 seat studio. It offers a wide variety of different performances. There is also a cafe inside.

    The Garrick Theatre.
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  • Bread making

    by Juliescrisp Written Dec 9, 2013

    Bread making day in Lichfield was a fab way to spend the afternoon with friends!
    We made a white loaf a wholemeal loaf so bread rolls and some delicious fougasse thatwe ate for lunch with soup!
    Having only tried bread making once before and it was a complete disaster this class was great.I left with lots of lovely bread and the skills to make more at home :)

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    Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum

    by King_Golo Written Jan 21, 2012

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    Samuel Johnson was born in Lichfield in 1709 and was to become England's "greatest man of letters" of that time. Educated in Lichfield and for a short period in Oxford (he couldn't finance his studies any longer, so he had to quit), he unsuccessfully tried to work as a teacher and later even to set up his own school. Continuously struggling with financial difficulties as a journalist and translator, he eventually found work compiling a giant English dictionary. Despite the fact that he didn't earn a lot of money with that, he is still remembered for it, and his work is comparable to that of the Brothers Grimm in Germany.
    The museum in Lichfield gives an overview about Johnson's life and work. The rooms are full with paraphernalia of Johnson, there are his witticisms written on boards in basically every room, and the little bookshop in the basement sells volumes and volumes of works about him. But what I liked most was the giant "Dictionary of the English Language" which is on display in one of the rooms and which you can browse for long died-out words from the 18th century. Fancy a little taste?

    "Huggermugger (noun) - a hug in the dark"
    "Monsieur (noun) - a term of reproach for a Frenchman"
    "Rebellow (verb) - to bellow in return"

    I wonder what he would have made of *lol*...

    Samuel Johnson deep in thought about
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    Lichfield Cathedral

    by King_Golo Updated Jan 21, 2012

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    England's only medieval cathedral with three spires is the main attraction in the beautiful city of Lichfield. Symbolizing the holy Trinity, i.e. God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, the spires are widely visible. Yet, when you reach the cathedral itself you find it is actually quite small.
    Completed in 1340 on the remains of former churches, the cathedral has a beautiful interior with a curiosity, the so-called Pedilavium. The part between the nave and the chapter house was (and apparently still is) used for the ritual practice of foot-washing, a tradition that is said to have been established by Jesus himself. Nonetheless, I preferred the outside of the cathedral. Its west front is full of statues of former kings and clergymen and a wonderful sight in the wintry afternoon sunshine. The tranquil Cathedral Close is also a beautiful sight and sitting on one of the benches gives you a good full sight of the cathedral.

    Lichfield Cathedral One of the statues on the west front

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    Visit the Cathedral

    by leics Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Lichfield Cathedral is not, perhaps, as large and impressive as many in England but it nevertheless has its own charm and sense of peace.

    Chad, made Bishop Of Mercia in 669, was soon sainted and his shrine became a focus for pilgrims. The first cathedral was a wooden structure, replaced by a Saxon stone structure in 1085 and the present building was begun in 1195. It is particularly interesting as it has three spires, and survived three seiges during the English Civil War (although one of the spires was destroyed). The cathedral had three major restorations before the 20th century!

    There is a lovely Chapter House to see, and some interesting Medieval wall-paintings, as well as tombs and chapels (see tips below). Well worth visiting if you are nearby.

    No entrance fee for this cathedral, though donations towards upkeep are appreciated.

    Cathedral entrance and three spires Side view Kings on the frontage.......
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    Cathedral

    by leffe3 Updated Aug 2, 2009

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    The cathedral's history (and therefore the town itself) starts with one man - Chad. When he was appointed Bishop of Murcia in 669 he moved the See from Repton to Lichfield, believed to be the site of the martyrdom of thousands of christians during the reign of the Roman Emperor Dioclecian in 300AD.

    Chad died within 3 years of his appointment, but a church was built to house his remains, and by 700AD Lichfield had become a place of pilgrimage.

    In spite of losing the See in the 11th century to Chester (and then Coventry) a stone cathedral was begun at the end of the 11th century, but within 100 years it was replaced by the Gothic cathedral (and the one we see, moreorless, today). It took approximately 150 years to build, so there were major changes as it went along, but Lichfield is seen as a classic example of Gothic church architecture (in spite of many modifications in later years). It also survived Henry VIII's reformation (where much of the interior was destroyed and the pilgrimages to see the remains of St Chad stopped) and three major attacks during the Civil War in the 17th century when the town changed hands between Royalists, Parliamentarians, Royalists and then Cromwell's men again all in the space of 3 years.

    But the next 300 years saw gradual restoration and a recent overhaul has restored the cathedral to its Gothic glory.

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    Tamworth Castle

    by Tom_Fields Written May 10, 2008

    Shortly after the Norman conquest, Robert le Despenser built the first castle on this site. A simple moat-and-bailey fort, it was replaced in the 12th century by the present stone castle, built by Robert Marmion. The Castle changed hands many times, with numerous modifications. It was twice threatened with destruction, once by King John I as revenge against Marmion, and once by Oliver Cromwell in the Civil War. So we're very lucky that it's still here.

    Inside is a wonderful museum of medieval life, with exhibits on more recent times. This is a great way to learn about how people lived in the old days. The top offers a great view of the nearby town of Tamworth.

    Tamworth Castle The gate leading to the castle Inside the museum The dungeon The view of Tamworth from atop the walls
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