Welcome to Pontefract

Once known as the Key to the North, Pontefract is now a thriving market town with many stories to tell. From horse racing and secret ballots to King Richard II and liquorice roots, there's plenty to discover.

Explore the town centre, discover hidden treasures at independent boutiques, browse the colourful stalls of the bustling market and enjoy afternoon tea with a warm Yorkshire welcome at a local cafe.

Head to Pontefract Castle and see the multi-million pound conservation project in action. Watch experts carefully preserve the ruins of the castle and see for yourself how the 19th century blacksmith's workshop has been transformed into a stunning Visitor Centre, including cafe, gift shop and learning zone - opening next year.

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your visit...

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What's On in Pontefract

Have a Go Archery

Have a Go Archery

Pontefract Castle
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Family Fun

Family Fun

Pontefract Museum
Season Opening Day

Season Opening Day

Pontefract Racecourse
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Easter Dragon Egg Trail

Easter Dragon Egg Trail

Pontefract Castle
St George's Day

St George's Day

Pontefract Castle
Bananarama

80's Night

Pontefract Racecourse
Back to School Raceday

Back to School Raceday

Pontefract Racecourse
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Rugby League Evening

Rugby League Evening

Pontefract Racecourse
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Proms in the Castle

Proms in the Castle

Pontefract Castle
Flat Cap & Whippet Family Day

Flat Cap & Whippet Family Day

Pontefract Racecourse
Family fun

Pontefract Liquorice Festival

Pontefract Precinct
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Picnic in the Castle

Picnic in the Castle

Pontefract Castle
Ladies Day

Ladies Day

Pontefract Racecourse
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Heritage Open Day

Heritage Open Days

Pontefract Castle
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Meet the Curator

Meet the Curator

Pontefract Museum
Lantern Parade

Lioness Lantern Parade

Pontefract Castle

Pontefract town centre is steeped in history.

The town’s medieval ‘burgage plot’ street pattern can still be seen in the yards that lead off the market place, and many of the beautiful buildings you see in the market place today date from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

Visitors can enjoy the splendour of the Georgian Town Hall and Buttercross, the Victorian market and the decorative Art Nouveau town museum.

The Pontefract Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) is helping to breathe life back into this historic town centre, funding repairs to key buildings, including historic shops on Gillygate and Ropergate, preserving them for years to come.

Click here to find out more...

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