Sudley Castle, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire, England.
Sudeley Castle is a castle located near Winchcombe, Gloucestershire, England. The present structure was built in the 15th century and may have been on the site of a 12th-century castle. The castle has a notable garden, which is designed and maintained to a very high standard. The chapel, St. Mary's Sudeley, is the burial place of Queen Catherine Parr (1512–1548), the sixth wife of King Henry VIII, and contains her marble tomb. Unusual for a castle chapel, St Mary's of Sudeley is part of the local parish of the Church of England. Sudeley is also one of the few castles left in England that is still a residence
A castle may have been built on the site during the reign of King Stephen (1135–1154). In 1442, Ralph Boteler who was created Baron Sudeley by Henry VI of England, built the actual castle on its present site using what he had earned fighting in the Hundred Years' War. He built up quarters for servants and men at arms on the double courtyard that was surrounded by a moat. He also added state and family apartments on the second courtyard. The Chapel, which would become St. Mary's, and the Tithe Barn were also built under Boteler.
In 1469, Edward IV of England confiscated the castle from its owner, Ralph Boteler, 1st Baron Sudeley and gave it to his brother, the Duke of Gloucester, who later became Richard III of England. Richard would use the castle as a base for the Battle of Tewkesbury. The Duke would later exchange this property for Richmond Castle making Sudeley property of the crown. After Richard became king, he became owner of the castle for a second time. During his reign the Banqueting Hall with oriel windows and the adjoining State rooms, now in ruins, were built in place of the Eastern range of Boteler’s inner court as part of a Royal suite.
After Richard's death at the Battle of Bosworth, it passed to the new king, Henry VII, who then gave it to his uncle, Jasper Tudor, Duke of Bedford. By the time Henry VIII succeeded, the castle was the property of the Crown again.
The knot garden of Sudeley Castle.
In 1535, Henry VIII visited the castle with his second wife Anne Boleyn, which had been empty and unattended for some time.
When King Henry died, the castle became the property of his son, Edward VI of England, who gave it to his uncle, Thomas Seymour who he made Lord of Sudeley. In 1547, Thomas married Edward's stepmother Catherine Parr. At this time, Seymour and Catherine moved into Sudeley. They were accompanied by Lady Jane Grey and brought with them ladies to attend on the Queen Dowager, as well as gentlemen of the household and Yeomen of the guard. The Lady Elizabeth Tudor was also a guest at Sudeley during her stepmother's marriage to Seymour. Thomas began to renovate the castle for Catherine's use, but only one room that he built remains today. It was here that Catherine became pregnant and gave birth to her daughter, Lady Mary Seymour, only to die seven days later after childbirth. Catherine was buried in the Chapel. Her grave was discovered in 1728 after the castle and the chapel had been left in ruins by the English Civil War. She was later reinterred by the Rector of Sudeley in 1817 and an elaborate tomb was erected in her honor.
Engraving of Sudeley Castle.
In 1549, Seymour's ambitions led him to being arrested and beheaded; after which, Sudeley Castle became the property of Catherine's brother, William Parr, Marquess of Northampton. After Parr's involvement with the plot to put Lady Jane Grey on the throne, he was stripped of his property and title by Queen Mary. Parr would regain his titles under Queen Elizabeth but the Castle remained property of John Brydges, 1st Baron Chandos.
In 1554, Queen Mary gave Sudeley Castle to John Brydges, 1st Baron Chandos, and it remained his property throughout the reign of Queen Elizabeth. It was at Sudeley that Queen Elizabeth was entertained three times and in 1592 a spectacular three-day feast to celebrate the anniversary of the defeat of the Spanish Armada was held.
Information taken from Wikepedia [link]
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