Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem was built in 1189 AD and so is thought to be the oldest inn in England. Built into the rocks of Nottingham Castle this watering hole is it’s own little piece of history. With a beer garden courtyard for summer and open fires for winter you will find a warm welcome at any time of the year! With caves as cellars that go deep below the castle Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem makes an interesting place to have some food or drink. Being so old there are plenty of ghost and horror stories about England’s oldest inn!
What’s In A Name?
What do you think the name of the inn means? Most people presume that the inn got its name as pilgrims would start on their way to Jerusalem here. However, this is not the case. The old meaning of the word ‘trip’ is actually a stop on a journey. So the inn’s name actually means to stop or rest on the way to Jerusalem. Some people even believe that King Richard I (Richard The Lionheart) stopped here on his way to the Crusades.
Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem Stories
An inn as old as Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem obviously has a few tales surrounding it. There are some antiques with stories and ghost tales are often told about the place.
The Rock Lounge is where most strange things occur. Glasses have been known to fly off the shelves and items disappear only to be found in strange locations. Apparently some people have heard the sound of glass smashing, but when the staff go to clean it, there is none! This is also where the cursed galleon is hung.
The Cursed Galleon
The Cursed Galleon is believed to have been a present from a sailor. There are a few of these sailor gifts hanging from the ceiling in the Rock Lounge, but it is the largest one that is cursed. You can also notice it by the amount of dust and cobwebs on the galleon – no one will clean it. It is believed that the last three people to clean it all died mysterious and unexpected deaths within twelve months of cleaning it! This caused landlords and ladies to refuse to let staff clean it, so over fifty years of dust and grime has built up. The maker of this galleon is unknown and no name can be seen on its side, however no one wants to give it a wipe to see if there is one! The Cursed Galleon in now encased in glass.
The Pregnancy Chair
An antique chair in Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem is said to increase a woman’s’ chance of pregnancy. So many woman have used this chair in hope of becoming with child that it is now too weak to meet the demand! You can see the chair in the upstairs lounge.
The caves were once the main part of the pub, but are now used as the cellars as the pub became more and more popular. These caves are carved out of the soft sandstone rock and were probably the castles’ brewery and possibly date back to the castle’s construction in 1068.
There’s a lot in these caves (not just cold beer) and they extend far into Nottingham city centre. One of the chimneys was said to emerge into the rocks below the castle and have a secret passageway into the castle itself, but this is now blocked up. Here there is also an old cock fighting pit and it is said that the castle gaol was once here. There is the ‘Condemned Cell’ which you can tell because of the low ceiling. The ‘Gaolers Chair’ can be seen too, etched out of the rock just outside the cells this is where the gaoler would sit.
You can book tours of these cellars, but you need to do it in advance in peak season. The tour will give you some of the history and you’ll see the cock fighting pit, the impressive amount of beer and even pour your own pint!
Food And Drink
Obviously the history and stories make this inn worth a visit, but there is also food and drink available! From pub classics, such as fish and chips to sandwiches and burgers. There are also sharing boards or visit on a Sunday for a traditional Sunday Lunch. Whether you’re after a hearty meal, a light bite of something for your sweet tooth there’s something on the menu for you! And don’t forget the drinks either! Local beers, scrumpy ciders and cocktails are all available. If you can’t choose between the local ales you can get a ‘Trip and Mix’ which consists of three half pints of your chosen ales served in tankards on a board. The ales change regularly, so there’s always something new to try!
If you fall in love with Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem you can even buy souvenirs to remember this gem! Up in the Rock Lounge T-shirts, badges, postcards and even tankards are all available to take home! The range is always being developed and updated, so keep an eye out! You can even suggest designs!
If you’re planning a trip to Nottingham, make sure you make a ‘trip’ at Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem. A pub and museum rolled into one! Being the oldest inn in England means there’s plenty of stories and history, don’t forget to book your cellar tour to quench your thirst for knowledge!
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