VISIT RICH IN HISTORY RETFORD BY TRAIN

One of the oldest market towns in England, Retford is an attractive destination for a day trip or weekend away. It is located in Nottinghamshire in the East Midlands where nature reserves such as Idle Valley, Clumber Park and Sherwood Forest are right on the doorstep, making it the perfect place to explore the outdoors and walk in Robin Hood’s footsteps. 

Why not head for a stroll by the Chesterfield Canal which runs through the town centre or visit the assortment of traditional high street and independent shops. The Bassetlaw museum is a fantastic attraction to visit, set in an 18th century Grade II listed town house.

Explore Retford’s rich history and find out about the Pilgrim Fathers, who fled to America in 1620 after being persecuted for their religious beliefs. You can learn more at the Mayflower Pilgrim Visitor Centre and the Mayflower Trail. Retford is also known for its connections to the origins of the Baptists and Wesleys in this area. 

Retford Attractions

Sherwood Forest

Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve, NG21 9RN Tel: 01623 677321

Home to the legendary Robin Hood, explore the 375 hectares of ancient woodland and enjoy picturesque and scenic surroundings. Sherwood Forest is a unique day out with plenty of walking routes and trails - you don't want to miss the Major Oak, the biggest oak tree in Britain estimated to be around 1,000 years old! 

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Idle Valley Nature Reserve

North Rd, Retford DN22 8QH Tel: 01777 858245

Idle Valley Nature Reserve in Retford is 450 hectares of beautiful lakes, grassland, and wildlife. Managed by the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust, there are over 250 bird species for keen birdwatchers, walking trails for family days out, and home to a diverse range of wildlife.

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The Bassetlaw Museum

Amcott House, 40 Grove St, Retford DN22 6LD Tel: 01777 713749

The Bassetlaw Museum is located in Amcott House, an 18th century, grade II listed Georgian town house which retains many of its original features. Situated in Retford town centre, collections include local history, archaeology, decorative and fine art, agriculture, costume and textiles. See an Anglo-Saxon boat, step back in time in a Victorian school room and experience a 1940s wartime kitchen. Free admission.

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Retford Restaurants

Whitehouses Inn

London Rd, White Houses, Retford DN22 7JF Tel: 01777 862710

Whitehouses is an award-winning family run pub and restaurant situated on the outskirts of Retford. The Chef-proprietor James specialises in the preparation of high quality dishes using a selection of fresh, local and seasonal produce.

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Hotels in Retford

Ye Olde Bell Hotel and Restaurant

Barnby Moor, Retford DN22 8QS Tel: 01777 705121

Ye Olde Bell Hotel and Restaurant is one of the best-preserved inns in England. The hotel features original oak panelling and beams, leaded windows, striking contemporary features and luxurious modern interiors. The hotel also features an AA Rosette Restaurant and Bistro, and a spa to ensure a fully luxurious stay.

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Best Western Plus Retford

The West Retford Hotel, 24 North Rd, Retford DN22 7XG Tel: 01777 706333

Set in an 18th Century Georgian manor house and surrounded by 5 acres of landscaped gardens, this hotel offers warm hospitality and some stunning surroundings whilst you enjoy your stay in Retford.

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Shopping in Retford

Retford Markets

The historic market town of Retford was granted its first charter (the right to hold a fair) by King Henry III in 1246 and this was extended in 1275 by King Edward I to allow a Saturday Market - a tradition that continues today. Retford Markets are held on a Thursday and Saturday and there is an Antiques and Collectors market on Fridays.

On the third Saturday of every month, Retford plays host to a popular Farmers’ Market where a variety of locally grown produce including fruit and vegetables, jams, meat, honey, ice creams, dairy produce and freshly prepared food and drink is on sale. Every Saturday there is also a craft market in the Buttermarket, in the Town Hall, Retford.

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The Barrister's Book Chamber

33 Churchgate, Retford DN22 6PA Tel: 01777 711441

A wonderful, quaint bookshop lined full of antique, vintage, and second-hand books. While away a cosy afternoon and curl up with a good book. Make sure to try the afternoon tea cakes selection in the vintage café. There are also rooms offering an overnight stay for somewhere a bit different!

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