Okay so technically autumn doesn’t start until the 23rd September but school is back, the air is getting crisper and its getting darker in the mornings and evenings, therefore to us, autumn is here! And I am so happy about it.

Autumn is my favourite season. I love the colours that start appearing – beautiful browns and vibrant oranges – and prefer the crisper air to the muggy humidity we’ve been facing this summer. I enjoy pulling on warm jumpers and fluffy socks and getting out my favourite pair of boots and my comfy coat. There always seems to be good programmes to watch on the TV (Peaky Blinders, anyone?) and I always read my favourite books around this time of year. Plus there is Halloween and the build up to Christmas, which we say we won’t think about until at least November, but by mid-October, we can hear the first jingle bell!

We think Newark & Sherwood is the place to be all year round but it’s particularly lovely this time of year and we’re going to give you a quick run-down of places to visit and things to do during autumn.


Sherwood Forest

This is just a given. The beautiful ancient oaks at Sherwood Forest look stunning all year round but they look Sherwood Forestespecially amazing during the autumnal season. The lush green leaves begin to turn to orange and the Forest is full of different shades of beautiful colour. Take your dog or take your family but one thing is to be guaranteed is that a walk in the home of Robin Hood is spectacular this time of year.

There is so much to see and do whilst you’re at Sherwood Forest. The RSPB Visitor Centre is the hub of the forest, where you can grab a quick cup of coffee to refuel and purchase those all-important Robin Hood and Maid Marian costumes. First time in the forest? Why not take one of the RSPB’s trails, developed to suit all interests and energy levels there are a number to choose from that will take you on a beautiful, scenic walk around the forest. You can pick up a printed version from the visitor centre and follow the markers through the forest.

Additionally, keep an eye on their events calendar. The RSPB are always updating their calendar with fun, seasonal events for all the family to take part in.

National Civil War Centre

Autumn is the perfect time to visit a museum – escape from the blustering winds to the cosy atmosphere of the National Civil War Centre and immerse yourself in the fascinating history of the civil war. This summer the museum have been installing two new, exciting exhibitions – Fake News and The World Turned Upside Down.

Believe it or not but Fake News was not created by the current President of the United States, it is in fact a centuries-old tradition. The manipulation of facts in what we read and see has been going on since at least the 17th century! With the confusion of the Civil War and the rise in literacy and advances in printing, it was the perfect storm to create misleading media. This new exhibition, explores the techniques used during the 17th century to spread fake news, including quickly produced and distributed pamphlets, specially commissioned portraits that were deliberately designed and altered and how extremist groups jumped on new ways to persecute and spread fear about people based on their faith, politics and way of life. It truly is a fascinating exhibition.

You think we live in crazy times now you should have seen the upheaval from the English Civil War! Rebuilding society after such a dramatic breakdown of the country’s social and political atmosphere opened the door for a chance at revolution! The exhibition, World Turned Upside Down explores the seismic shifts in religion, science, culture and politics during the 17th century. The exhibition will ask just what happened to turn the world from right way up to ‘upside down’; examine what it would have been like to plunge into the mayhem of war and emerge into an unfamiliar landscape; and uncover how the pyramid of power shifted from the God-chosen King on top…to Charles’ head on the ground.

Heritage Open Days

From the 13th – 22nd September Heritage sites across the UK are throwing open their doors for visitors to take a step back behind the scenes to see pieces of history that you don’t get to see on a day to day basis. In Newark & Sherwood we have a whopping 17 events you can get stuck into, from heritage skills demonstrations in Newark Market Place, guided tours and even a Heritage Hop in Southwell.

For a rundown of all the events you can get involved in across the area, check out our last blog post here.

Rufford Abbey's Spectacle of LightRufford Abbey Country Park

Rufford Abbey Country Park is always a lovely place to visit to enjoy a wonder around the ruined Cistercian Abbey or a stroll through the grounds. However, this autumn Rufford Abbey have a special event – The Spectacle of Light. Running from the 18th October to the 3rd November, this spectacular event will create an illuminated trail around Rufford Abbey’s stunning gardens. Marvel at the majestic trees and romantic ruins! There will also be an amazing kaleidoscope of colour parasols and a glorious garden of glowing spheres, as well as surprising sculptures, meteors, Moroccan lanterns and much more. Also, why not sip delicious mulled wine or hot chocolate and tick into (truly) scrumptious hot food in the Abbey Courtyard.

Thoresby Park

Just a short hop, skip and a jump from Sherwood Forest is the lovely Thoresby Park. There is so much to see and do, so why not head over there and spend the day – explore the acres of beautiful parkland, estate lawns and woodlands. Discover the gorgeous scenery with Thoresby’s circular walk that takes in the sights and sounds of the entire estate including the lovely River Meden and St John’s Church in Perlethorpe. There are opportunities to explore off the beaten track and follow trails – remember to look out for the ancient oaks and the abundance of wildlife in the forest. Or, why not hop on a bike? Head over to the Round House, next to the car park, hire a bike and get exploring!

They also have beautiful shops and a lovely cafe where you can refuel with a delicious coffee and a sumptuous cake.

The Bramley Apple Festival

The Bramley Apple is one of the UK’s favourite cooking apples – but did you know the original tree was planted in Southwell? Every October, the town have a fabulous celebration of the apple which attracts hundreds of local, national and international visitors. Expect an amazing food and drink festival in Southwell Minster with a huge array of apple-related products as well as fruit specialists, artisan producers and cookery demonstrations. Throughout the town shops, businesses, Southwell Library, cafes, restaurants and local pubs take part in the occasion, with Morris dancers adding to the atmosphere of this unique festival.

The festival takes place on the 19th October.


This is just the tip of the iceberg, click around our website to find more places to visit this autumn. Also, remember to look out for our Halloween blog post listing all the spook-tacular events you could visit…coming soon!


Previous Blog Posts 2019

Heritage Open Days 2019, Aug 26, 2019

August Bank Holiday in Newark & Sherwood, Aug 19, 2019


The Legend Returns This Summer, Jul 29, 2019

The Circus is coming to town, Jul 22, 2019

School’s Out for Summer, Jul 15, 2019

Summer in the Buttermarket, Jul 8, 2019


A Weekend of Celebration, Jun 24, 2019

Newark Book Festival: A Literary Haven, Jun 12, 2019

Who is Ready for some Outdoor Theatre? Jun 9, 2019

A Weekend of the Very Best of Music, Jun 3, 2019


Joyful June – A Weekend of Festivals, May 28, 2019

Summer Festivals 2019, May 20, 2019

Fun for Everyone in Newark & Sherwood this May Half Term, May 13, 2019

Shopping in Southwell this Spring, May 7, 2019


Early Bank Holiday Fun, Apr 29, 2019

The Adventures of Robin Woof, Apr 8, 2019

Easter Fun in Newark & Sherwood, Apr 1, 2019


Time to Escape? Mar 18, 2019

The History and Culture of Newark & Sherwood, Mar 4, 2019