Mary Queen of Scots Open Day

Having recently watched the newly released film I was instantly interested when this event popped up on my Facebook newsfeed. After clicking for more information I set a reminder in my diary for the day.

I’ve lived around the corner from the Sheffield Manor Lodge and have walked past many a time but never actually been in, so was excited at the chance to finally see the lodge up close.

On arrival at the information centre, there was a long queue outside and it took about 15 minutes to get to the front where we duly paid our £5 entrance fee. This is where the day seemed to go wrong, it looks like the open day had been a lot more popular than the organisers had anticipated. Things had descended into a farce, we were given no direction to what was happing next, and people were just stood around waiting not knowing when the next tour was or where to go. We were eventually told to go outside where a tour was starting, then to be told to go back inside by the guide. A suggestion for the event organisers would be to either let people walk around the grounds on their own or book people in for specific time slots to prevent this from happening in future. Eventually, we were able to join a tour guide on a tour of the grounds.

Once we got out on a tour the tour guide was engaging and really brought to life the local history of the site, with other tidbits of interesting information about the famous visitors there. I was intrigued by the story of Cardinal Wolsey, Henry VIII’s chancellor and one of the most influential people in England at the time. How his visit to the lodge when he was on his way to London to stand trial for high treason (Wolsey had been unable to secure the king an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon so that he could go on and marry Anne Boleyn) was his downfall when he suffered from dysentery after he stopped in Sheffield for 16 to 18 days and eventually died in Leicester three days after leaving Sheffield.

I didn’t get to go in the main lodge as the queues were too long and it was too cold. I’ll return in the summer to check out the main lodge.

Sheffield Manor Lodge can be contacted on 0114 276 2828 or via sheffieldmanorlodge.org. Sheffield Manor Lodge is situated at 389 Manor Lane, Sheffield, S2 1UL.

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