Six floors and 149 steps up a spiral staircase to view beautiful Lincolnshire countryside, you certainly get what you pay for when visiting Tattersahll Castle in Lincolnshire . We visited the castle last Saturday and during the week I have recorded our visit. The interior you are viewing now is the work of Lord Curzon who saved the castle in 1911, the fireplaces had been ripped out to be sent overseas to an America buyer and then the castle was going to be demolished. This never happened as Lord Curzon of Kedleston bought the castle, restored it and opened it to the public in 1914. He also managed to find the fireplaces and restored them to their rightful places and now it looks like they had never left.
As you make your way throughout the castle you will notice the stained glass windows, the windows have the coat of arms of all the owners of the castle. The tracery in the lower windows had to be replaced, as did the floors of the central rooms of the three upper floors.
The roof and the detail of the battlements were reconstructed as far as the existing evidence allowed.
On the day we visited we were treated to a thunder storm, which added to the visit, but unfortunately made the interior very dark. There was also quite a few bodies around, its not that I mind bodies, I quite like to photos of them now, but not when I am recording a building, so I hope you get the feel of the building from the photos I have manage to take, minus bodies.
Welcome to Tattershall Castle which we visited on Saturday, and as the guide book mentions you are now looking at the finest medieval brick built castle in England. Built in 1434 by Ralph Lord Cromwell, who was Treasurer to Henry VI. The first castle on the site was built in 1231 by the 2nd Robert de Tateshale who had a licence to build a stone fortified house or castle at Tattershall. In 1434 to 1446 Sir Ralph rebuilt the castle in brick and enlarging the buildings with a keep, stable, gatehouse and kitchens. When Sir Ralph died, having no direct heir, the castle passed through many royal hands and in 1693 the Earls of Lincoln were the last people to live in the castle.
Now it gets interesting……..from 1694 to 1910 the castle was abandoned, left to become derelict and ruinous. It became the ‘Romantic Ruin’ and visited by many tourists on a day out, not dissimilar to our visit on Saturday. A farmer had bought the castle for the land to grow crops and used the castle as a cattle shed. The following photos are from a display in the castle and I think they are from this time period.
In 1910 the castle was sold to an American consortium. The fireplaces were ripped out, to be shipped over to an American collector and the castle was to be demolished. When I read that….demolished, how could that have got even that far, but it happened in those day……but not to this castle, as a hero step in to save it….Lord Curzon of Kedleston visited the castle and within 24 hours had purchased the castle by telegram and then set about restoring it. He even found the fireplaces at Tilbury docks and returned them to Tattershall after a hugh procession through the village. There was then a period of restoration and you can see from the following photos some of the work which was carried out.
So we have the wonderful Lord Curzon to thank for still being able to visit the castle, which he open to the public in 1914 four days after the announcement of the First World War and it stayed open all throughout the conflict. In 1925 Lord Curzon died and the castle was bequeathed to the National Trust. The castle closed for a short time during the 2nd World War and was home to the Home Guard and at the end of the war Tattersahll Castle opened its doors once more and has stayed open ever since. But how different the out come could have been, but because of Lord Curzons efforts to save the castle ‘The Ancient Monuments Act’ was passed. This act meant the state could protect any monuments deemed important and prosecute anybody attempting to damage them.
Last visit to the castle will be the interior, with the remarkable nearly lost fireplaces.
On the way to Tattershall Castle you pass through the village of Coningsby in Lincolnshire. The one thing you can not miss is the large church of St Michael, we did stop to see if it was open, but unfortunately it was well and truly locked. While taking some exterior shots for a later post, I came across this little fellow, I suppose once upon a time he would of looked scary,but now he has worn to quite a cute little chap.
I wanted to change one of the photos from Saturdays visit to Tattershall Castle of the re-enactment that was taking place, to monochrome. I also wanted a photo with no modern bodies, so that it had a timeless feel, luckily I had one. This is for my ‘Occupation Category’ because to me, it is an occupation of people living out history.
When we visited Tattersham Castle on Saturday a group were spending a week in the castle grounds. They were very good and as you wandered around the inner ward, you did get a feeling of what it could have been like in the middle ages, just for a moment, in-between the noise of the thunder storm which was looming over head.
Next post will be about the exterior of the castle……I really enjoyed Saturdays visit, so I am reliving it, bit by bit.
We visited Tattershall Castle on Saturday in Lincolnshire, we just made it into the castle before the thunder storm hit. I must say it did make for a very atmospheric visit.
When we started to come down the spiral staircase, I suddenly noticed the graffiti that was covering the walls on the stairs and around the arches leading to each floor. The only problem was that they were too many bodies trying to get pass and hence only a small amount of photos. These are little snap photos into the past and I love some of the old fashion names.
On Saturday we visited Tattershall Castle in Lincolnshire, next to the castle there is an amazing church, it is recognised as one of the finest examples of English Perpendicular Architecture in the country, not only that, but it has one of the highest pulpits I have ever seen. The pedestal or wine glass pulpit in the nave (there is also one in the chancel) dates from the original building of the church in about 1475. The sounding board above the pulpit is a 150 years later in the Jacobean Period.