We will be driving from the Cotswolds to York. will stop at Warwick Castle.Is there anything further north to break up the driving? Looks fairly industrial.
By the time you have left Warwick Castle (where you could easily spend half a day), you may not want another stop - it will take a bit under 3 hours drive to York. But possible places to visit along the way are:- - Chatsworth House (about a 15 mile detour off the M1, which is the road you are likely using - note, that is 15 miles each way, although it is worth it) - Pontefract Castle (you practically pass the front door) - I suppose you could also take a less direct route to York and visit the National Memorial Arboretum (it includes a Gallipoli Memorial), from there you continue north - going near Chatsworth - and join the M1 higher up. But as I say, after Warwick you may not feel like doing all that.
Another place worth visiting which is just off the M1 is Hardwick Hall, which was built in the late 16th Century. Details at www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hardwick.
Someone asked a fairly similar question a month ago, although in that case they were driving to Northumberland. Here's what I said, copied and pasted: If you draw a line from, say, Gloucester to Newcastle, you will notice that it goes through the main midland and northern industrial areas. There are many places that you could stop and find something interesting, but if we avoid the big cities (Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield) and think about scenic alternatives to York, Buxton comes to mind. It's a spa town in the Derbyshire Peak District National Park: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buxton
Thank you so much for the prompt responses. It tells me that Warwick Castle is well worth seeing and may be enough. Also the other options are very helpful. We will get to Warwick as early as possible and wanted to make the most of the trip, so thank you. A 3 hour drive is not a problem for Australians but wouldn't want to miss something special.
After what you will spend at Warwick Castle, and after all the events during the day that they put on for you, you may find that you will be there all day. I have been. Its a good pull from there to York. You may find that three hours in the UK behind the wheel may be a bit different to three hours behind the wheel in Victoria.
Kenilworth Castle is only a few miles from Warwick. We thought it was interesting to compare a lovely ruined castle with heavily restored Warwick. Seeing Kenilworth wouldn't add too much additional time to your drive....In the Peaks / Derby area, we enjoyed stopping at Haddon Hall which was a principal filming location for The Princess Bride. Eyam, the "plague village" is interesting. There are also lots of neolithic sites in that area.
"Hardwick Hall, more glass than wall" is a most interesting Nat'l Trust house to visit. Check out Bess, Countess of Shrewsbury, its most famous owner/resident. She was a contemporary of Elizabeth I. The Rail Museum,the Minster,a walk around the Roman walls, shops in the Shambles------spend 2-3 nights in York if you can.