Fungi fun, Medieval justice and spooky goings-on in Sherwood this October

After a whole summer devoted to Robin Hood, the Sheriff of Nottingham gets, well, a weekend all about him at Sherwood Forest this October.

The Sheriff’s court will be in session on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th October, and he’ll be handing down some medieval justice.

The Sheriff will be judge and jury at Sherwood in October.

So, if you have a child who won’t tidy their room or a spouse who leaves wet towels on the floor (this list of crimes is not exhaustive), then bring them before the Sheriff for judgement!

If you want to know what life under the Sheriff’s rule was like in the Middle Ages, then the Lord Thomas Stanley Retinue will provide the authentic look and feel of the period in their re-enactment camp at the Major Oak green over the two days.

And while the nights might be drawing in, the Sheriff is still planning to lead a Twilight storytelling walk on the Saturday, setting the record straight from his side of the legend, no doubt.

You can book your place on the walk via the Events page.

On the Sunday, the hilarious Calverton Real Ale and Plough Play Preservation Society returns to Sherwood, this time to present their newly ‘scripted’ Robin Hood mummers play – believed to be the first to be written in the county for over a century.

There will be Have a Go archery too with Creative Kingdom down by the Major Oak.

Fungi in Sherwood Forest
Lots of varieties of fungi can now be seen (but not to be foraged, please) in the forest. Photo by Tammy Herd.

But before all that, we celebrate fab fungi on Saturday 7th October.

The Notts Fungi Group will be here and there will be a family trail, expert-led guided walks, craft activities, fungi displays and talks about these incredible organisms.

It’ll be a case of look, but don’t touch because foraging in the forest isn’t allowed.

The combined 1,000 acres of the Sherwood Forest and Budby South Forest reserves are a protected Site of Special Scientific Interest and Special Area of Conservation. Picking fungi without permission here is against the law.

If you can’t make the 7th but would love to have some fungi fun, our family fungi trail began this week and continues through the month of October.

On Sunday 22nd October, we turn our attention to another type of forest life-form – bryophytes, also known as mosses and liverworts.

The British Bryological Society, celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, will be shedding light at Sherwood on this often-overlooked woodland world.

There will be a photo exhibition, guided walks and talks and also the chance to get up close and personal with selected specimens from the forest, using hand lenses provided by the society.

Of course, being October, that can only mean…Hallowe’en!

Sherwood’s Haunted Hallowe’en Family Trail starts on Saturday 14th October, and we have our ever-popular Witches and Warlocks Den-Building Day on Saturday 21st, with sessions in the morning and afternoon.

Devilishly good fun in our den-building area.

Build a shelter using wood from the forest in our den-building area that would be ideal for casting spells or concocting potions. There will be a spooky story for kids and hot chocolate to see off the chills.

Visitors can get crafty on the same day with artist David Evans at his Hallowe’en themed willow-weaving workshop. All materials and instruction are provided. Just bring your creativity.

Booking is essential for the den-building and willow-weaving workshop events and can be done via the website.

As the big day approaches, there’ll be Sinister Scares in store on the night of Saturday 28th October.

Individuals, pairs and teams are invited to crack the cryptic clues and resolve the riddles to escape from the clutches of the outlaws who rule over the forest after dark.

Who can say what you’ll see or hear in the woods at nightfall – or how you’ll find your way back to safety. This activity is recommended for grown-ups.

And as the shadows lengthen and the darkness descends on Sunday 29th October, join storyteller Jim Munro for some spooky All Hallows’ Tales based on the legends. There will be two sessions – the first suitable for families and children and a second with some more grisly stories for grown-ups.

You will need to book your place via the website for these events too.

There will also be regular storytelling tours with the Sheriff, his Master at Arms William de Tankerville and Miles, the wandering Medieval pedlar, on Saturday mornings, and Hygge Tuesdays with Sherwood Nordic Walking each week during the school term.

And Have a Go archery returns once again from 25th-29th October.

Full details can be found at the Events page of the website.