Finding the hidden Lincoln

By Gina Davies, The Linc

Traditionally, Lincoln is seen as a historical city; quiet but full of the quaint English charms tourists seem to love. But what more does Lincoln have to offer?


Lincoln

We have a magnificent Cathedral, one that has been used in many films – including the Da Vinci Code. Lincoln Castle, although now much of a ruin has another talking point, it houses one of a rare copy of the Magna Carta. With a City as old as Lincoln (you can find it in the Doomsday book) there’s bound to be talks of ghosts and ghouls, indeed, we have three ghost walks every week around the historical quarter.

The county, blessed with its green fields and flat land has become notable for two things; vegetables and RAF bases. In fact, if you’re out in Lincoln you’d be hard pressed not to find either a strange herb or a military man on a night out – but who’s complaining?

Although a lot of the city has been modernised, don’t let the abundance of glass and stainless steel disillusion you – this city is medieval through and through. According to our good friend Wiki – Wikipedia to you and me – the Romans conquered this part of Britain in AD 48 and shortly afterwards built a legionary fortress high on a hill overlooking the natural lake (the modern day Brayford Pool). The Celtic name Lindon was subsequently Latinized to Lindum and given the title Colonia when it was converted into a settlement for army veterans. Lindum Colonia was then shortened amongst English speakers to become ‘Lincoln’. Handy for your next pub quiz.

The University itself is very young, it was built in 1996 after locals decided to raise some of the sponsorship; with industry pulling out of the city and sporadic tourism, they felt that Lincoln needed a focus and a direct source of income. Voila, the University of Lincolnshire and Humberside was born, adjusting to the University of Lincoln in 1998. Rumour has it that when the famous Oxford University was conceived, the monks in charge couldn’t decide where to put their new place of study – Lincoln or Oxford? Of course it was Oxford that got the notoriety but you could say that Lincoln had been without a University for thousands of years.

With cities such as Nottingham, Leicester and Sheffield vying for attention in close proximity, Lincoln could be seen as the baby both in the fashion and music stakes. It’s usually Nottingham that cashes in on the tale of Robin Hood, but today’s cool-kats have nothing on our tailors. Back in the 12th century one of the county’s biggest exports was cloth, and it seems that our Robin loved nothing more than to run around chasing Sherrif’s in fabulous ‘Lincoln Green’ pantaloons.

Speaking of clothes, I could of course boast of our two Primark’s, an abundance of high street rivals and our plethora of vintage and boutique’s…but then I’d just be boasting so I’ll tell you about the nightlife instead.

Lincoln is populated with many bars. It would take you a good weekend to get round them, so if you’re new to the city or just fancy a change – here’s our recommendation of working your way around. For the all-nighters: Lincoln nightlife isn’t just about the town centre. Head up to the top of hill and work your way down from places such as The Lion and the Snake, The Magna Carta, Kind and the rest to get a true flavour of what’s on offer.

For those up for a quickie: There’s two options here, if you haven’t got a lot of time but would still like a bit of variety you can either keep to the town centre and many a high street name with Walkabout/Slug and Lettuce etc, or head on down to the Brayford front to enjoy Quayside, Lloyds and a few more. For those who enjoy the finer things: We can highly recommend cocktail bars such as Dogma in town and a few of the speciality bars such as Revolution.

For the clubbers: The Lincoln club scene is dominated by indie nights at Scream, chart hits at The Engine Shed, disco or house at Sakura and a bit of everything at Ritzys. With smaller clubs such as Annexe and The Cell doing speciality nights, not forgetting the rockers out there who should head to the alleyways to find bars like Jailhouse Rock and the epic, Sugarcubes.
But don’t worry if your pockets feel a little light, Lincoln was voted the second cheapest city to live in England. But with plenty of historical attractions and all that retail therapy, we’re sure you’ll soon find a way to spend it!

  • The most famous person alive to come from Lincoln is Jonathan Kerrigan, currently appearing in Heartbeat.
  • The most famous dead person is Alfred Tennyson – Poet Laureate who was born in Somersby.
  • Lincoln is twinned with cities in China, Poland, Australia and Germany.
  • Lincoln City Football Club are known as ‘The Imps’, if you want to know the reason why head to the Cathedral. Is it a Devil’s accomplice or mason’s joke? Decide for yourself.
  • The MP for Lincoln is Gillian Merron, a Junior Minister in the Department of International Development. She holds regular open surgeries and is contactable on most issues at merrong@parliament.uk
  • Lincoln castle boasts one of three original copies of the Magna Carta.
  • The Da Vinci Code with Tom Hanks was filmed in the Cathedral, as they could not get permission to film inside Westminster Abbey.
  • Edward I held the first Parliament in the Cathedral.
  • Lincoln born actor Colin McFarlane starred alongside Christian Bale in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight.
  • The library in the Cathedral was designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

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