Photographer's Note

Hello Everyone,

This scene shows the Assize Courts, inside the walls of Lincoln Castle.

Court hearings have taken place within the grounds of Lincoln Castle since the castle was built in the 11th century. A medieval shirehall on the site was demolished and replaced by a new county hall in 1776 but, after finding that the 18th century county hall was subsiding due to a mixture of local quarrying and poor construction, the justices ordered its demolition using prison labour and the commissioning of a new facility on the same site.

This current building, which was designed by Sir Robert Smirke in the Gothic style and built at a cost of 40,000, was completed in 1823. The design involved a symmetrical main frontage with thirteen bays facing the east gate of the castle; the central section of three bays featured an arched doorway with a triple Gothic window on the first floor; the roof was crenellated and there were octagonal corner turrets.

Internally, the principal rooms in the building were the two courtrooms, one for hearing criminal cases and the other for hearing civil cases, both approximately square, decorated with wainscot panelling and located on the first floor. There was also a grand jury room containing an ornate fireplace guarded by lions bearing shields.

Although not as old as the castle, because of its location it has a great sense of age and importance.

If you are inspired to read this, you may find it interesting - The Romans were the first to make the top of Lincoln's hill home but it is the Norman castle, built on order of William the Conqueror and dating back to the 11th century, that can still be seen today. As part of the 'Lincoln Castle Revealed' project, Saxon remains have now been found in between the Roman townhouses and Norman castle adding another layer of history to the area. A complete Saxon stone coffin was found during the excavations containing a skeleton wearing leather boots, another symbol of the person's importance.

Hope this hasn't bored you!
Well done, if you have managed to read all this, Bev :-)

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Additional Photos by Beverley Robinson (Royaldevon) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 9446 W: 372 N: 21865] (85932)
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