Everyone knows the story of Robin Hood, but does anyone actually know how it ended after that? Did Robin Hood, Lady Mardian, and King Richard really live happily ever after while the evil Sheriff of Nottingham and Prince John was humbled and sidelined? Well no. A visit to England's Worcester Catherdal will show why.

If one is interested in England's rich medieval history, then consider going to the Medieval Festival - the largest medieval festival and re-enactment in the United Kingdom. Medieval Europe is often as poorly understood as King John and his brother, King Richard the Lionheart.


The Story of Prince / King John

King John is invariably portrayed as the weak and scheming villain in Robin Hood movies. But in real life, while King John did exist, Robin Hood almost certainly did not (there is only a little amount of evidence that he did). John lived from 24 December 1166 – to 19 October 1216 and was the King of England for 17 years from 1199 to his death in 1216.

While king he lost the Duchy of Normandy and most of the other English lands in France to the king of France. He was forced to sign the Magna Carta by the powerful barons limiting the power of the king (it is considered an early step to the development of the constitution of the United Kingdom today).

  • Nickname: He Was Called John Lackland Because As The Youngest Son, He Was Not Expected To Inherit many lands
  • Lived: From 24 December 1166 – to 19 October 1216
  • King: He Was King of England For 17 Years
  • Died: He Died While on Campaign

He was appointed the Lord of Ireland and unsuccessfully attempted a rebellion against his brother King Richard while he was absent on the Third Crusade (so that part of the story is kinda true).

He became king after the death of his brother King Richard. He was excommunicated by the Pope for a while and eventually died of dysentery while on a campaign in eastern England aged 49.

Chroniclers of the day were mostly critical of John's reign.

Related: Some Examples Of The Torture Devices Used In Medieval Times

King John Is Buried In The Worcester Cathedral

Today one can't see the tomb of Robin Hood (partly because he probably didn't exist) but one can see the tomb of King John at Worcester Cathedral. King John's tomb has the oldest Royal effigy in England and makes for a stunning setting in which to hear about his life. Worcester Cathedral is an impressive Anglican cathedral in Worcester, England.

The current cathedral was built between 1084 and 1504 and so presents many styles of English architecture.

  • Built: Between 1084 and 1504

Another famous English person interred there is Prince Arthur (not to be confused with Arthur of Camalot - who also likely didn't exist).

  • Dedicated: The Worcester Cathedral Is Dedicated to Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary

Related: Believe It Or Not, Table Manners In Medieval England Were Better Than They Are Today

Visiting The Worcester Cathedral

For fourteen centuries Worcester Cathedral has been a place of Christain worship and people are welcome to come and attend the services today. One can see the church's schedules and calendar on their website.

The cathedral is open every day and even offers guided tours for those wanting to have a deeper understanding of the cathedral and its entombed King that history has been harsh on.

Opening Hours:

  • Weekdays & Saturday: 10am - 5pm (last entry 4.30pm)
  • Sunday: 1 - 3pm (last entry 2.30pm)

"Turn Up For A Tour" Tour:

They offer their " Turn Up For A Tour " program. These run from 11 am and 2.30 pm Monday to Saturday during normal opening times. The cost of a guided tour is £7 per person and as the name suggests, no booking is required. Tours last 45 - 60 minutes and are ideal for individuals or couples who want to turn up on the day.
Guided Tour: 
  • Price: £7 Per Person
  • When: 11.00 am and 2.30 pm Monday to Saturday
  • Duration: 45-60 Minutes
Historic Tours: They also offer their Historic tours. These tours delve into the history of Worcester Cathedral and can be pre-booked for groups and tailored. They cost £7 per person for half an hour up to an hour, or £10 per person for an hour and a half. The total minimum charge is £35.00 or £50 respectively.
  • Cost: Minimum Charge £35.00 For One Hour or £50 Hour And A Half
Other Tours: In addition, they offer a number of other themed tours. One can pre-book and choose a topic of interest like - Architecture; Tudors, Stuarts and the Pilgrim Fathers; Famous people (including King John, Prince Arthur, Sir Edward Elgar, Sir Stanley Baldwin, Woodbine Willie, The Duke of Hamilton, St Wulfstan, and St Oswald (to name a few - this cathedral has a very rich history).
  • Cost: Minimum Charge £35.00 For One Hour or £50 Hour And A Half
Next: This Is What You Would Have Eaten During The Medieval Age And No, It Wasn't All Turkey Legs And Mead