Jan 31, 2024

Explore The Fascinating History Of Newark On Trent

Looking for things to do whilst you stay in our Newark accommodation? The history of Newark will keep you entertained for days.

Nestled along the banks of the River Trent in Nottinghamshire, England, Newark-on-Trent has a history as rich and varied as the landscape surrounding it. From its medieval origins to its pivotal role in the English Civil War, Newark has evolved into a vibrant community proudly wearing its historical legacy.

Read on to learn more about the fascinating history of Newark-on-Trent, which is just a five-minute drive away from Hawton Waters caravan site.

The Early Years

Newark's history dates back to Roman times, with evidence of settlements in the area suggesting an early presence of human activity. However, it wasn't until the medieval period that Newark began to take shape as a town. The town's name, "New Work," reflects its status as a new, fortified settlement constructed by the Normans in the 12th century.

Newark Castle

At the heart of Newark's history stands the iconic Newark Castle. Built in the 12th century under the orders of Alexander, Bishop of Lincoln, the castle played a crucial role in the medieval defense strategy against Scottish invaders. Over the centuries, Newark Castle underwent various renovations, evolving from a military stronghold to a royal residence. Today, the castle stands as a testament to Newark's enduring past and serves as a popular tourist attraction.

Now, Newark Castle is host to fantastic events throughout the year, offering fun for all of the family. It’s also been turned into a registry office, making it a beautifully scenic wedding venue too.

Click here to discover upcoming events at Newark Castle, for you to visit during your stay at our Newark touring site.

The Civil War and the Siege of Newark

One of the most significant chapters in Newark's history unfolded during the English Civil War in the 17th century. As a Royalist stronghold, Newark became a focal point for conflict between King Charles I and Parliamentarian forces. The town endured three sieges, with the most protracted lasting from 1645 to 1646. Despite facing hardship, Newark remained a symbol of Royalist resistance until its surrender in May 1646. The scars of the Civil War are still visible in the town's historic architecture, adding a layer of depth to Newark's narrative.

Visit the town’s Civil War Museum during your stay in our Nottinghamshire lodge, and immerse yourself in history. You can book tickets here and enjoy free entry for under 16s.

Trade and Prosperity

Following the tumultuous Civil War period, Newark-on-Trent entered an era of rebuilding and prosperity. The town's strategic location on the River Trent facilitated trade and commerce, contributing to its economic growth. Marketplaces and fairs became integral to Newark's identity, drawing merchants and traders from near and far. The legacy of this trade-focused era can be seen in the town's charming market square and the architecture of its historic buildings.

Newark Royal Market still takes place throughout the week and on Saturdays, so why not take a trip there during your lodge staycation or visit to our Newark caravan site? There, you can find locally sourced fruit and vegetables, fresh-cut flowers and plants, clothes, leather goods, delicious bread and tasty cakes, fresh fish and meat, as well as crafts, books, and carpets.


As the Industrial Revolution unfolded in the 18th and 19th centuries, Newark's importance as a transportation hub grew. The arrival of the railway in the mid-19th century further connected Newark to national and international trade routes. The town's railway heritage is preserved in the Newark Air Museum, where visitors can explore a collection of vintage aircraft and artifacts, reflecting Newark's contributions to aviation history.

If you’re looking for places to visit while staying in our Newark-on-Trent lodge, then the Newark Air Museum is a great choice as it’s only a short drive away.

Stay at Hawton Waters

As visitors stroll through Newark’s historic streets, gaze upon its medieval castle, and absorb the stories embedded in its architecture, they embark on a captivating journey through time—a journey that brings to life the town’s rich and enduring history.

Visit Newark-on-Trent and book a stay at Hawton Waters, located only a short drive away. Our Nottinghamshire caravan site is home to plenty of generously sized, lakeside pitches, as well as a luxury lodge by the water. Or, you can stop in our Newark Shepherd’s Hut, for a cosy and romantic stay.

Click here to book your visit, or ring us on 01636704742.