A Community Project

Sharing with the Town

RK Logo 200It has and continues to be a challenging time for most, but for the town’s voluntary group Renaissance Knaresborough it is regrouping and setting its sight on a brighter 2021.

Renaissance Knaresborough (RK) is a not-for-profit organisation open to residents, community groups, social enterprises, and institutions. Their aim is to invite engagement from the community to promote Knaresborough.  RK’s role is to support activities that promote the town’s heritage, arts, culture, leisure, tourism, infrastructure, and entertainment, ‘making a great town even better’.

Despite the arrival of the pandemic, the group has continued to operate remotely and has continued to drive town initiatives forward. The newly appointed Chair Councillor Zoe Metcalfe said, “with a fresh start to the year, we thought it time to share the status of past projects and beginning of new initiatives planned for 2021.”

Saturday March 28th 10 -5pm

Centre on Gracious Street

Do you have information you would like to share that will help us with a new exhibition in September? We are looking for local people who have photos, mementoes, stories and artefacts to do with Knaresborough’s social history and in particular - 

  • Impact of WW2 
  • Linen industry/Waltons 
  • Stockwell housing estate in 1940s and 1950s (estate 100 years old this year, designed as Homes for Heroes)
  • Water Carnival.
  • Former trades and industries
  • Trinitarian Abbey
  • House history

At the March community Open Day you will be able to see our displays and artefacts on World War Two, former Trades and Industry and Housing and learn about our plans for the future.

Knaresborough's Town Windows are a collection of public artworks illustrating characters and events from the town's long and rich history. In order to preserve these important town assets, we must raise funds to cover management and much-needed repair costs and have started a GoFundMe Appeal. Please consider helping us.


The artworks use the technique of trompe l'oeil, a painting style that sets out to 'fool the eye' into seeing a painted picture as something real.


So, here we are, well into September, and the excitement is building in anticipation of the new Knaresborough AutumnFest. This Festival will be a celebration of our Town: its natural beauty, its long history, its talented people and vibrant community. We will look at the past, enjoy the present and take a peek into the future!

AutumnFest will run over 2 days on Saturday 28th September from 09.30h to 17.00h & Sunday 29th September from 10.00h to 16.00h coinciding with the UCI Races across the Harrogate District. The races will be screened throughout the 2 days on a Big Screen in Knaresborough Market Place, and, in between races, there will be plenty of activities in locations across the town to keep you entertained and informed!

A promenade performance of four stories in the grounds of Knaresborough Castle

vampire in Knaresborough

Knaresborough: by day a quiet market town on the banks of the River Nidd; by night something seethes beneath the streets. Why this town of two halves, of two faces? When did the fracture begin?

Initial research undertaken by the Vampire Experiment has unmasked something sinister, something lurking at the heart of the town – a curse buried beneath the place where the hangman's noose once swung, protected by the walls of the castle.

We are looking for brave subjects to risk their very souls in order to cast the light of science onto a shrouded past.

The experiment will take place on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September 2019 at 1 pm, 2 pm and 3 pm each day. Ghosts will be awoken, doorways unlocked. The time to act will be short, but the evidence must be gathered, and a choice must be made. The soul of a town depends on it.

Contact Us for more information!



What does a Roman hoard, stone gargoyle from the Trinitarian Abbey, the Women’s Land Army, child evacuees, JW Turner and the Manor House all have in common?  They all feature in a wide-ranging exhibition “Our Knaresborough Our Stories” taking place on 28th and 29th September. 

I gargoylet will be part of our new and exciting Autumnfest taking place in and around Knaresborough.  The exhibition will take place at our Heritage Hub at COGS from 10 -5 with amazing banners, artefact displays and activities for children.


For further info contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.






RK OpenDay

A quick thank you to everyone who took the time to visit us yesterday, it was great to see you, everyone demonstrated a clear passion for the town. Some great insights and ideas which will be delivered by us working together.

Special thanks to CFK Developments Ltd for use of Claro Chambers, MAC Architects, Knaresborough Cricket Club, as well as our own RK volunteers.

autumnfest 2019

As part of our Autumn Fest, there is to be an Exhibition “Our Knaresborough, Our Stories” which aims to raise interest in and support for a Town Museum and Art Gallery for Knaresborough. The exhibition will illustrate what such a Museum could display and ask people for their views.

To be a success we are asking local people to share their stories, photographs and artefacts and we particularly need help with the following: ….

What does the Women's Land Army, Turner, Roman cooking pots, Grimbald Crag and the Old Manor House all have in common...?!
Answer - they all feature in the exhibition OUR KNARESBOROUGH OUR STORIES to be held on 28th and 29th September at COGS (Centre on Gracious Street). 

This exhibition aims to raise awareness of the potential for a new Town Museum and Art Gallery in Knaresborough and give a taster of what it could be like....

Town Museum and Art Gallery for Knaresborough

A Town Museum and Art Gallery is sorely needed in Knaresborough. Knaresborough has a rich multi-layered and unique history but its story is not being told. Local children miss out by not finding out about their local history and Knaresborough’s artefacts are being scattered and worse lost. Visitors do not fully engage with and enjoy the town’s cultural heritage because the Court House Museum (the only local museum) can only offer a limited visitor experience because of site constraints. Currently, the Court House Museum has neither the space nor the conditions to provide the appropriate environment for the type of treasures a Town Museum in Knaresborough could potentially display. A Town Museum could be transformative – boosting the local economy, encouraging investment and offering ample scope for the local community to become more engaged with their town’s wonderful heritage.

Nidd riverboat

RK OpenDay

Open Day 15th May 2019, 09.00 – 17.00

Former Natwest Bank, High St, Knaresborough

& Market Place Stall

The Purpose?

  • To reintroduce RK to the community 
  • To remember projects of the past and highlight things we are & can do together for the future
  • To attract support and stimulate new ideas to Make a Great Town Better




Knaresborough’s Little Cannon

Knaresborough’s Little Cannon

We’re calling it Knaresborough’s Little Cannon, because there are other cannon, but this one used to sit on a wall on Waterside.

Where was the wall on which the cannon sat?

When did it go missing?

What was the story at the time?

Anyone know ‘who dunnit’?

We are trying to find it before the Autumn Festival planned for the weekend of September 28th & 29th 2019, as a first step to gathering Knaresborough’s lost historical artefacts.

There are many stories surrounding this Little Cannon, but we think it only disappeared in the 50's or 60's. There are stories that it was thrown into the River by rowdy youths, but we would like more information before we send divers in after it!!

So, if you were living in Knaresborough when the Little Cannon went missing, please share your memories about this mystery by going to the contact us page on this website or on our Facebook page.

Wednesday 14th November from 1.30 – 4 pm at Henshaws Arts & Crafts Centre


Access around Knaresborough is not easy for a lot of people and the Crag is both a thing of beauty but also divides the town into two. Visitors to Waterside rarely venture up the steep uneven steps to the Castle, marketplace and High Street – and vice versa. In effect, this 
means the town has two separate economies – and many visitors and local people alike have problems getting to all areas of the town easily.

28th - 29th September 2019

RK-autumnfest 2019Are you ready to join the fun, and help Renaissance Knaresborough (RK) coordinate a series of events of varying sizes throughout the last weekend of September, to be known as Knaresborough Festival?
The concept has been getting more exciting as more people have added their ideas. Individuals and groups have already 'signed up' to a celebration of all things Knaresborough! We want to cover the whole of Knaresborough (not just the Riverside), exploiting and complementing the opportunity provided by the final weekend of the UCI World Cycling Championships.