Another day trip we decided to take during lockdown to discover more of what’s on our doorstep (and satisfy our inner history buffs), was to visit the small town of Market Bosworth, located in the Midlands near Leicester.
Getting to Market Bosworth requires a car as there is no train station in the town, and whilst you can visit it by bus from Leicester, it isn’t easily accessible or with hugely regular routes. Parking is fairly easy, with a few decent sized and reasonably priced car parks around the town (other than on a Monday when most places are closed).
You could also stay overnight in Bosworth and discover more of the local Leicestershire walks and surrounding areas, or visit Leicester itself to explore the city. Once in Market Bosworth, here are the best things to do and see.
1. Explore the pretty market town
In the centre of town are some picturesque shops and a lovely market square which are nice to flan around. There are also plenty of chocolate box cottages for beautiful photos, and a number of traditional English pubs for lunch – including The Old Black Horse.
2. Get on the history trail and visit the Bosworth Battlefield Centre
About a 10 minute drive outside of the town square, you can visit the site of a momentous battle for the English throne. Market Bosworth was the site of the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 – many of you will have heard of the Wars of the Roses between the Houses of Lancaster and York in the 1400s for control of the English crown – but did you know Bosworth is the site of the final battle? In this battle, King Henry VII defeated Richard III- forever commemorated in Shakespearian literature through the line, ‘A horse, a horse! My kingdom for a horse!’
The Battlefield Centre covers the history of the Wars of the Roses and the Battle of Bosworth itself, plus is great for children with lots of armour and weaponry to pick up and play with. There are also often events on at the site with actors/stall holders in traditional dress giving talks on medieval fighting methods or serving a hog roast. Lovely.
You can also walk around the Battlefield site and surrounding fields for a lovely stroll.
3. Ride a traditional steam train
Near the Battlefield centre is the aptly named Battlefield Line, which is the last remaining part of the former railway line opened in 1873. It runs from Shackerstone to Market Bosworth. You can take the steam train up to Shackerstone, have a tea and cake in the Victorian tea room there and then come back to Bosworth.
4. Stroll around the Country Park
Within a short walk from the main Market Square is the Country Park. Here you can stroll down to the lake and feed the ducks, explore in the woodland and grassy meadows and probably even meet a few friendly cows. If you come in May you can also see the lovely bluebells covering the ground. Perfect for burning off a bit of that pub lunch!
5. Take to the water at the Water Park or by hiring a Canal Boat
Finish off your day by taking to the water. You could either visit Bosworth Water Park, where you can hire pedalos, play Pirate crazy golf, or just stroll to the ‘beach’ area and read a book with a picnic. Alternatively if you’re after a more unique experience, you could head to Bosworth Marina and hire a canal boat for a leisurely trip along the canal. You can contact Harry and Sally here to do this.
Thank you for reading. I hope lockdown has also enabled you to explore a bit more of your local area as well, and if you find yourself in Leicestershire, be sure to add Market Bosworth to your list. Stay safe and happy travelling.