Royal Banquet at St Briavels CastleView map
No ordinary youth hostel...
t might be called a royal banquet but you leave your table manners at the door when you enter the beamed dining hall at St Briavel’s Castle in Gloucestershire.
There’s no cutlery used here, just bread – and lots of it - to soak up the yummy Medieval gruel (a hearty vegetable soup with barley), accompanied by tasty homemade sausages.
Built in 1205 for the notorious King John (him of Robin Hood fame), the castle has been a Norman fortress, hunting lodge, court and debtors’ prison throughout its colourful 800-year history.
Today it’s a youth hostel so, after eating like a king, you get to sleep (albeit not so regally) on comfy bunk beds in alluringly-named dorms including the State Apartments, Hanging Room and Prison Room. Just beware of midnight visitors; the place is haunted by the ghosts of former prisoners who reportedly roam the stone staircases at night.
You’ve been warned...