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Last Updated:  Tuesday, 18 March, 2003, 06:25 GMT
Famous castle 'should be demolished'
Nottingham Castle

Nottingham Castle is a "disappointment" for tourists and should be demolished, a city leader says.

Councillor Ali Asghar, the current Sheriff of Nottingham, says a new castle should be built in its place.

A councillor for seven years, he told BBC News Online: "I think tourists who come to see the castle are probably very disappointed.

"It looks nothing like a castle and it is not what people expect.

"My personal view is... that the mansion should be knocked down and rebuilt as a proper castle, with some sort of theme park.

'Knock it down'
Ali Asghar at Nottingham Castle
The mansion should be knocked down and rebuilt as a proper castle, with some sort of theme park
Ali Asghar
Sheriff of Nottingham

"As a council, I think it is possible that we are going to look into it."

The building overlooking Nottingham is not actually a castle at all.

The original castle was demolished in the 1600s after the execution of King Charles I.

A pink sandstone mansion now stands on Castle Rock where the original castle stood.

All that remains of the original castle is the grounds and part of the curtain walling.

The pink sandstone mansion was ruined by fire in 1831 but restored in the 1870s by local architect Thomas Chambers Hine and opened as a museum of fine art.

The building now acts as a museum and gallery, hosting various art shows which come to the city.

It is also the starting point for tours of underground caves.


Castle history

1067: William the Conqueror erects a wooden castle on the rock

1170: Stone castle constructed by Henry II

1649: The castle is demolished after Charles I's execution

1663: The first duke of Newcastle constructs the palace seen today

1831: Rioters torch the building

1878: The mansion is restored and opened as the first municipal museum and art gallery outside London




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's Rachael Hand
"It looks nothing like a castle and it's not what people expect"



SEE ALSO:
Sheriff dismisses 'villain' tag
18 Mar 03 |  England
Windsor Castle plans to go green
01 Feb 03 |  England
Laird fined for castle demolition
31 Jan 03 |  Scotland
Toilets testing tourist tempers
03 Sep 02 |  England


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