English Heritage manages Beeston Castle and Woodland Park in the heart of the Sandstone Ridge. Crowning a rocky crag and boasting spectacular views above the Cheshire Plain, Beeston is one of the most dramatically sited medieval castles in England. On a clear day you can see all the way from the Pennines to the Welsh mountains.
Defended by steep cliffs on three sides, Beeston's crag has attracted people since prehistoric times. It became a Bronze age metal-working site and later an immense Iron Age hillfort, whose earthwork defences were adapted by medieval castle builders for Ranulf, Earl of Chester, one of the greatest barons of Henry III's England.
The Castle was an important English Civil War stronghold, finally surrendering to Parliament in November 1645 after a long siege. Later, wealthy Victorian John Tollemache promoted its romantic ruins as a tourist attraction.
With a 4,000 year history and a 40-acre woodland park Beeston Castle has something for everyone to enjoy and is one of the most popular visitor attractions on the Sandstone Ridge. A visitor centre explains the Castle's eventful history, and refreshments can be enjoyed at the Sandstone Café.