|Part of Lincolnshire|
|Controlled by||Heritage Lincolnshire|
|Built by||Ranulf, Earl of Chester|
|In use||13th to 15th century|
|Materials||Spilsby Greenstone |
|Battles/wars||Battle of Winceby|
|Events||Birthplace of Henry of Bolingbroke|
Bolingbroke Castle is a ruined castle in Bolingbroke (or Old Bolingbroke) Lincolnshire, England.
Most of the castle is built of Spilsby greenstone, as are several nearby churches. The local greenstone is a limestone that proved to be porous, prone to rapid deterioration when exposed to weather and a substandard building material. The castle was constructed as an irregular polygonal enclosure. The castle is one of the earliest examples of a uniform castle designed and built without a keep. It was originally surrounded by a large water-filled moat 31 metres (102 ft) wide. The curtain wall was up to 5 metres (16 ft) feet thick and defended by five D-shaped towers and a twin-towered gate house.
Similar to another castle built by Ranulf during the same period at Beeston in Cheshire, Bolingbroke had no inner defensive keep. The castle relied instead on thick walls and the five D shaped defensive corner towers. Some design similarities are noted with the contemporary castle at Boulogne-sur-Mer, France that was also constructed without a central donjon.
The area was first fortified by the Saxons in the 6th or 7th century. In the 12th century the Normans built a Motte-and-bailey on a nearby hill above the settlement of Bolingbroke.The present structure was founded by Ranulf, Earl of Chester, in 1220 shortly after he returned from the Fifth Crusade.
Ranulf died in 1232 without a male heir, and his titles, lands and castles passed to his sisters. Following the death of Henry of Grosmont, 1st Duke of Lancaster in 1361 Bolingbroke passed through marriage into the ownership of John of Gaunt. His wife Blanche of Lancaster, daughter of Henry of Grosmont, was born at the castle in 1342. John and Blanche's son, Henry (the future Henry IV), was also born at Bolingbroke Castle in 1367 and consequently was known as "Henry Bolingbroke" before he became king in 1399.
By the 15th and 16th century, the castle had fallen into disrepair although repairs were carried out during the Tudor period. In 1636 a survey found that all of the towers were effectively beyond repair.
At the start of the First English Civil War, Bolingbroke was again put to use as a military fortification garrisoned by Royalist forces. In 1643 it was badly damaged in a siege during the Battle of Winceby. The following year, the castle was recaptured from the Parliamentarians but due to defeats elsewhere was relinquished again. In 1652 the castle was slighted to prevent any further use. The towers and walls were torn down and dumped into the moat.
The last major structure collapsed in 1815.
The castle, which is now a national monument, was excavated in the 1960s and 1970s. It was maintained by English Heritage up until 1995 when Heritage Lincolnshire took charge. Much of the lower walls are still visible as are the ground floors of the towers.
In the summertime, the castle is home to numerous events including performances of Shakespeare.
Kenilworth Castle, in the town of Kenilworth in Warwickshire, England, was founded during the Norman conquest of England; with development through to the Tudor period. It has been described by the architectural historian Anthony Emery as "the finest surviving example of a semi-royal palace of the later middle ages, significant for its scale, form and quality of workmanship". Kenilworth played an important historical role: it was the subject of the six-month-long siege of Kenilworth in 1266, thought to be the longest siege in Medieval English history, and formed a base for Lancastrian operations in the Wars of the Roses. Kenilworth was the scene of the removal of Edward II from the English throne, the perceived French insult to Henry V in 1414 of a gift of tennis balls, and the Earl of Leicester's lavish reception of Elizabeth I in 1575. It has been described as "one of two major castles in Britain which may be classified as water-castles or lake-fortresses...".
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PontefractCastle is a castle ruin in the town of Pontefract, in West Yorkshire, England. King Richard II is thought to have died there. It was the site of a series of famous sieges during the 17th-century English Civil War.
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Ranulf le Meschin, 3rd Earl of Chester (1070−1129) was a Norman magnate based in northern and central England. Originating in Bessin in Normandy, Ranulf made his career in England thanks to his kinship with Hugh d'Avranches - the Earl of Chester, the patronage of kings William II Rufus and Henry I Beauclerc, and his marriage to Lucy, heiress of the Bolingbroke-Spalding estates in Lincolnshire.
Warkworth Castle is a ruined medieval castle in Warkworth in the English county of Northumberland. The village and castle occupy a loop of the River Coquet, less than a mile from England's north-east coast. When the castle was founded is uncertain: traditionally its construction has been ascribed to Prince Henry of Scotland, Earl of Northumbria, in the mid-12th century, but it may have been built by King Henry II of England when he took control of England's northern counties. Warkworth Castle was first documented in a charter of 1157–1164 when Henry II granted it to Roger fitz Richard. The timber castle was considered "feeble", and was left undefended when the Scots invaded in 1173.
The honour of Pontefract, also known as the feudal barony of Pontefract, was an English feudal barony. Its origins lie in the grant of a large, compact set of landholdings in Yorkshire, made between the Norman conquest of England in 1066 and the completion of the Domesday Survey in 1086. An expansive set of landholdings spanning sixty parishes and six wapentakes in Yorkshire, the honour was created primarily to serve a strategic, defensive function in a potentially hostile frontier zone. The first lord was Ilbert de Lacy, who built a castle at Pontefract which became the caput of the honour. Alongside the Yorkshire holdings, a smaller number of dispersed possessions elsewhere in England belonged to the honour.
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