Richmond is an ancient and bustling market town, with its Norman castle, cobbled market place and streets, Georgian architecture, monuments and abbeys, shops, eateries and theatre, all built around and above the magnificent River Swale with the fabulous scenery of the Yorkshire Dales National Park on the doorstep.
Richmond was founded by the Normans in 1071, and the castle still dominates the town. In medieval times the town was an important market, which continues to this day with weekly markets. Much building took place in the Georgian period, and this is still evident in the town today with elegant townhouses, the Georgian Theatre Royal, the castle walk, the obelisk in the Market Place and the Culloden Tower. More recently the railway came to Richmond, and whilst this is no longer the case the old station is now used as a health and leisure suite, including a swimming pool. In the historic Victorian railway station there is a contemporary café bar and restaurant; a modern, two-screen cinema; an art gallery over two floors; a free heritage centre; and six artisan food producers - open to the public and selling their produce. Visitors can buy from a medley of Yorkshire delights from a bakery, cheese-maker, micro brewery, ice-cream parlour, fudge house and honey-maker.
There is also an historic link with The Green Howards, and the fascinating Green Howards Museum is in the centre of Richmond. Military links remain to this day as the world famous Ghurkas are based at nearby Catterick Garrison.
Other attractions include the Millgate House Gardens, a walled garden behind one of the Georgian houses off the market place. There are also the Friary Gardens, the ruins of Easby Abbey, the Richmondshire Museum and the Georgian Theatre Royal, Britain’s most complete Georgian playhouse, with its professional productions. If shopping is your thing, then you will not be disappointed, since Richmond has any number of individual shops and galleries that you will not find elsewhere, and there is an excellent selection of pubs, restaurants, cafes and takeaways to suit every pocket and taste.
Just outside the town you are straight into the spectacular countryside of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, which you can explore by vehicle or on foot, and further afield are the North York Moors National Park and the Lake District, Hadrian’s Wall, the East Coast, Durham, Newcastle, York, Beamish Museum, and much, much more.
Richmond makes a fabulous base, whether you just want to park up the car and explore the area on foot and enjoy the local facilities, or travel further afield and get to know the North of England better.