Caistor is an historic market town located in the Lincolnshire Wolds. The town is notable for its fine Georgian buildings, but Caistor dates back much further than that; there was an ancient British hillfort at this spot, with a Roman camp later occupying the same spot, and there are Roman remains throughout the town.
You can see a section of the original 4th century Roman wall on the southern boundary of the churchyard surrounding the parish church of St Peter and St Paul. This very fine medieval church has Saxon and early Norman work, and boasts a gad whip, a remnant of an ancient annual ceremony.
The town’s attractive market square is a conservation area, in part because it is home to 56 listed buildings, most dating from the Georgian and Victorian periods. One such is Sessions House, built in 1662. Another is Caistor House in the Market Place, built in 1682.
The Georgian flavour of the town centre is a result of a disastrous fire in 1681 that destroyed most of the town’s medieval buildings.
One thing you won’t find for sale in the market place is sheep, yet for hundreds of years Caistor was home to one of the busiest and most important annual sheep fairs in England, with over 30,000 animals changing hands.
There are 56 listed buildings in Caistor, and the town makes a good centre for exploring the Wolds and walking the long distance Viking Way.
According to a local tale, the apostle called Simon the Zealot came to Britain after Jesus’s crucifixion. He ran afoul of the local Roman authorities and was crucified in or near Caistor on 10 May AD 61.