Herstmonceux Castle is a Tudor-style castle near the village of Herstmonceux, in East Sussex (south-east England , United Kingdom ), built in the 1540s by order of Sir Roger Fiennes on the foundations of a pre-existing manor. It is one of the oldest significant brick buildings still standing in England .
In the place where the present castle of Herstmonceux now stands, originally stood a manor known as Herste of the Monceux, built following the marriage of Idonea de Herste to the noblewoman Ingelram de Monceux, a marriage that was celebrated during the twelfth century.
In 1330, the estate was acquired by the Fiennes family and in 1441, after Sir Roger Fiennes, treasurer of the royal house and veteran of the wars against the French.In 1449, the castle became the property of the son of Roger Fiennes, who assumed the title of Lord Dacre.
the Naylor-Hacre family abandoned the castle in 1777 to settle in nearby Herstmonceux Place .During the 19th century, the castle passed into the hands of several owners, notably Thomas Reed Kemp (1807), John Gillon (1819) and H B Curteis.
In 1910, the estate on which the castle stands was purchased by Colonel Claude Lowther, who had undertaken a renovation to restore the building to its splendor.During World War II, Herstmonceux Castle was used by an insurance company,also suffered bombing by German planes.
In 1946, the owner ceded the castle and part of the surrounding park to the Greenwich observatory, which had various structures added and some telescopes installed.1994, the castle became the seat of the Bader International Study Center, a dependency of Queen University.
The building, Made from red brick it is one of the earliest examples of a brick built building in England.classified as a first grade castle , houses a former astronomical observatory, which was dependent on the Greenwich observatory and is currently owned by a study center at Queen University.
Appearances : The castle and gardens were used by comedians Reeves and Mortimer for one of their Mulligan and O’Hare sketches. The Coca-Cola Company rented the castle for use as part of a prize in a Harry Potter-themed sweepstakes.the castle served as “Hogwarts” in a day of Harry Potter-related activities for the sweepstakes winners
The castle was used for filming part of The Silver Chair, a 1990 BBC adaptation of the book (one of The Chronicles of Narnia) by C. S. Lewis
Herstmonceux Castle is used primarily as an overseas campus of Queen’s University (based in Kingston, Canada) and the castle is usually closed to the public except for guided tours.
Access : Coordinates: 50.8695, 0.3387 / Address: Wartling Road Entrance, Herstmonceux, Hailsham, East Sussex, England, BN27 1RN / Location: 4 miles east of Hailsham, on the A271 / The nearest mainline train station is Polegate where taxis are available./ The nearest main buses will stop in Hailsham and a taxi is then required.
Highlights : -site layout :
- Gardens & Grounds , 300 acres of carefully managed woodland : Elizabethan Garden , These date back to at least 1570, , Sundial & Rose Garden , Shakespeare Garden Shakespeare garden featuring plants mentioned in his plays, Lower Garden , Apothecary Garden , Shady Garden , Magic Garden ,
Wild Flower Meadow , Folly & Garden , Woodland
- Guided tours of the castle allow you to see a lot more, including inside the main building,
- there is also a combo ticket available that also gives you access to the nearby Observatory Science Centre, The Observatory Science Centre is a science museum, The centre has over 100 exhibits including large-scale outdoor exhibits as well as several galleries of indoor exhibition space.
Opening hours:The castle grounds and gardens are open to the public from early March until the beginning of November- Open daily 3rd March – 28th October (closed 24th August)
Admission fees : Gardens and Grounds : Adults £6.00,Children 4-17 yrs £3.00 ,Children Under 4 – Carers Free / Castle Tours : Adults £3.00 ,Children 4-17 yrs £1.50 , Children Under 4 – Carers Free
Facilities : Chestnut Tea Rooms , Open daily 10am-5.30pm / Castle Art Gallery , Open daily 11am – 4pm / Two picnic lawns / Baby changing facilities / Disabled toilets / Gift shop / On-site light refreshments / Public toilets / Parking spaces
Info : Wheelchair Accessible / Dogs Welcome on Leads / Castle Tours: Limited Wheelchair access / Smoking not allowed / Venue approved for civil marriage / Wedding receptions / Plants – produce for sale
Activities : Castle Tours / photo opportunities / Scenic Driving- Auto Touring
Events : Englands Medieval Festival at Herstmonceux Castle , 24th, 25th & 26th August 2019 / Medieval Banquet at England’s Medieval Festival , Saturday 24th August, 6.30pm to 10pm & Sunday 25th August, 6.30pm to 10pm / Halloween Horrors , Sunday 27th October, 11am – 4pm /
Go next : Hailsham , East Sussex / Pevensey ,East Sussex / Battle – the site of the Battle of Hastings in 1066 / Burton St Leonards – Elegant Regency town / Rye , town in East Sussex.