Lichfield is notable for its three-spired cathedral and as the birthplace of Dr. Johnson, the writer of the first authoritative Dictionary of the English Language. A Dictionary of the English Language, one of the most influential dictionaries in the history of the English language, was prepared by Samuel Johnson and published on April 15, 1755. Lichfield is also the birthplace of Elias Ashmole (23 May 1617 – 18 May 1692). Elias was a celebrated English antiquary, politician, officer of arms, astrologer and student of alchemy. He supported the royalist side during the English Civil War, and at the restoration of Charles II he was rewarded with several lucrative offices. Throughout his life he was an avid collector of curiosities and other artifacts. Many of these he acquired from the traveller, botanist, and collector John Tradescant the Younger. Ashmole donated most of his collection, his antiquarian library and priceless manuscripts to the University of Oxford to create the Ashmolean Museum.
Today Lichfield still retains its old importance as an ecclesiastical centre, but its industrial and commercial development has been relatively small; the centre of the city thus retains an essentially old-world character, with pockets of historic charm.
By roadLichfield is well placed for the main road network being close to the A38, A5 and M6 (Toll) so is easy to get to by car. Parking can be more of an issue as the number of spaces is often not sufficient to cope with demand, especially on Saturdays. However, the city does not usually get busy until mid morning on Saturdays and before Christmas, so early birds do well.
Main car parks are as follows:
- Multi-storey car park situated near Lichfield City Station - warning tight spaces;
- The Friary - Large car park, but a little further from the centre;
- Cross Keys - Recently built two storey car park;
- Off Beacon Street - Large car park at rear of shops, but tends to fill up first
By railLichfield has two stations. Both are on the Cross City Line from Birmingham. Lichfield City station is served by four trains an hour, with every other train also serving Lichfield Trent Valley.
City Station is adjacent to the centre and is the easiest way for rail travellers to get in to the city.
is really useful because it is on the West Coast Main Line with direct trains to London, Northampton, Stafford, Stoke-on-Trent and Crewe.
By busAll bus routes into Lichfield call at the Bus Station, which is opposite Lichfield City Rail Station and adjacent to the main shopping areas. Buses serve destinations including Stafford, Rugeley, Tamworth, Cannock, The National Arboretum, Burton upon Trent, Birmingham and local villages.
Lichfield is small enough to be able to get around most of the areas of interest in the centre on foot. There are local buses running on selected routes, but they generally are really of use only to residents.
Lichfield CathedralThe world's only Medieval cathedral with three spires, dates back to the 7th Century.
Dr Johnson Birthplace MuseumInventor of the Dictionary and amongst England's best known literary figures. Dr Johnson was an essayist, poet, biographer, lexicographer and a critic of English Literature. Also considered to be a great wit and prose stylist, he was well known for his aphorisms. The single most quoted English writer after Shakespeare.
St. Mary's Heritage CentreHousing a Lichfield museum in central Lichfield market square.
- Minster Pool and Stowe Pool
- Dam Street
- Market Place
- Corn Exchange
- Milley's Hospital
- St. Johns without the Bars
Beacon ParkA huge expanse of recreational parkland.
phone: +44 1543 412121address: Castle Dyke, WS13 6HR
Lichfield International FestivalWell-established major music and arts festival every July with famous international performers at venues throughout Lichfield.
phone: +44 1543 417413address: 12 Gresley Row, WS13 6JF
- Eastern Eye
- Lal Bagh
- Lime Pickle
- Lee Garden
- Thai Rainbow
- Mama Thai
- Don Paco
- Pizza by Goli
Egophone: +44 1543 258234address: New Minster House, Bird Street
- Cafe Nero
- Cafe One
- Melbourne in Lichfield
- The Lounge
- Numerous pizza, kebab and fish and chip shops
- On Friday nights a mobile fish and chip van drives around much of Lichfield cooking and serving as they go - the food couldn't be fresher!
1709: The Brasserieaddress: 3-5 Lombard StreetA brasserie serving fine British cuisine
- Queens Head, Queen St, +44 1543 410932. Legendary and friendly pub just outside of the city centre serving 6 top quality Real Ales. There is a huge cheese counter where customers can order cheese, pickles, bread to soak up the beer !
- Earl of Lichfield, Conduit St, +44 1543 251020. Popular city centre pub serving well kept Marston's Pedigree from nearby Burton on Trent.
The Gatehouseaddress: 1 Bird StreetA branch of Lloyds No.1 bars a medium range of JD Wetherspoons Bars
Apresaddress: 13 Bird StreetA bar and restaurant from the well known chain
address: 16-18 Tamworth St, WS13 6JJA JD Wetherspoons Bar
The Scalesaddress: 24 Market StreetAn old style English pub in the heart of the city centre
George IVaddress: 34 Bore StreetAn old pub with many live music performances
The Bowling Greenaddress: Friary RoadOwned by Ember Inns, a pub and restaurant with a bowling green on the premises
Maltaddress: Wade StreetOpened in 2010, a restaurant and bar specialising in real ales from local breweries.
Duke of Yorkaddress: 23-25 GreenhillThe oldest inn in Lichfield
phone: +44 1543 414822address: Bird Street
- Netherstowe House
phone: +44 1543 481494
phone: +44 1543 252080address: St. John Street, Lichfield. WS13 6PBFour beautifully appointed rooms with all facilities. inc. Wi-Fi.
phone: +44 1543 414500address: Beacon Street
As with the rest of the UK, in any emergency call 999 or 112 (from a land-line if you can) and ask for Ambulance, Fire or Police when connected. It is free to call the Emergency Services from Payphones.
Lichfield is a generally safe city with most crime levels well below the national average. Incidents of violent crime and sexual offences are very low. However, as with the rest of the United Kingdom it is advisable to avoid large drunken groups where possible as alcohol-related crime is on the rise throughout the country. It is also advisable to exercise normal security measures.