Two new visitor attractions to open in York

Exploring the Yorkshire links of the last Plantagenet and the first Tudor King

With the last of the Plantagenet kings very much in the news at the moment thanks to the discovery of the remains of Richard III beneath a car park in Leicester, visitors to York will discover how the much maligned monarch was linked to the city in a new visitor attraction opening at Monk Bar, with a second attraction focusing on his nemesis and successor, Henry VII, just around the city walls at Micklegate Bar.

Opening on 5 April 2014, the two new attractions look at the lives of the two monarchs, particularly focusing on their visits to York in 1483, 1486 and 1487, and their wider links to Yorkshire as a whole, from the bloody battles of Wakefield and Towton, to Henry’s marriage to Elizabeth of York, which saw the creation of the Tudor rose, blending the white rose of Elizabeth’s family with the red rose of Henry’s Lancastrian ancestors.

“This is a fascinating time in history, marking the end of the medieval era and the beginning of the Tudor period, and it was a time of prosperity for the city with few signs of the decline that would come under the next king, Henry VIII, with his dissolution of the monasteries,” comments Sarah Maltby, director of attractions for the JORVIK Group, which has created the two new attractions.  “The attractions are housed within two of the historic city gateways – Monk Bar and Micklegate Bar – and we are confident that many visitors will take the opportunity to walk along the walls to get from one to another, engaging along the way with the most significant archaeological monument in York, from the Roman Multangular Tower to the Victorian arches near York railway station.”

The displays within each of the attractions have been designed to appeal to the widest possible audience, from ardent historians to children, for whom Terry Deary, author of the Horrible Histories books, has specially written some child-friendly displays in his inimitable style.  Within Monk Bar, creative use has been made of each of the three floors to house displays of armour and weaponry, audiovisual displays and even a medieval tent packed with children’s activities, whilst also exposing many original features within the space, including the portcullis.

As Richard III’s story ends with the Battle of Bosworth at Monk Bar, Micklegate Bar’s Henry VII Experience picks up the story with the new Tudor king seizing the throne from his fallen Yorkist foe.  “At first, Henry was cautious of entering York, which had been loyal to Richard, but within the first year of his reign he too paid the city a visit, and was delighted to be welcomed with generous hospitality from the residents, who were keen to make a good impression,” explains Sarah.  “In Micklegate Bar, we explore the lives and trades of the Tudor residents, from sanitation to trade, before returning to the plots and plans that prompted Henry’s second visit to the city in 1487 to quash any potential rebellion!”

Admission to the new attractions will be £3.50 each for adults, £2.50 for children and concessions or £9.00 for a family of four.  A joint ticket covering the Richard III and Henry VII Experiences is priced at just £5.00/£3.50/£3.00/£14.00 respectively, and a ‘Medieval Pass’ ticket also incorporating Barley Hall will be available for £8.00 for adults, £6.00 for concessions and £4.50 for children.  A family ticket (four people) is £22.75 or £23.75 for five people.

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Notes to editors: 

The JORVIK Group of attractions comprises:

JORVIK Viking Centre, which celebrates its 30thanniversary in 2014


Barley Hall

The Henry VII Experience at Micklegate Bar, opens 5 April 2014

The Richard III Experience at Monk Bar, opens 5 April 2014

The JORVIK Group also organises York’s annual JORVIK Viking Festival in February and the Yorkshire Medieval Festival in August.

For further media information, please contact:

Jay Commins or Samantha Orange, Pyper York Limited

Tel: 01904 500698

Email: or

About Us

Based in York, UK, the JORVIK Group of Attractions comprises:JORVIK Viking CentreDIGBarley HallThe Richard III Experience at Monk BarThe Henry VII Experience at Micklegate Bar The JORVIK Group also organises the annual JORVIK Viking Festival each February in York, and the Yorkshire Medieval Festival in August.