OK, it’s not a castle, but it comes close!


Haddon Hall, in the Derbyshire Peak District, is an example of a fortified manor house that grew and grew. Certainly it has some aspects of a castle, and the whole impression one gets as you approach over the little stone bridge across the River Wye is that of a quite magnificent structure. The earliest wall you can view dates from 1215, in the reign of King John (just a year before he died of ‘a surfeit of lampreys’!). I try to visit as often as I can, as there is so much to see including a wonderful Great Hall (complete with minstrels’ gallery) as well as some early tapestries. Haddon Hall has been used in many TV and film productions, including ‘Elizabeth’ and ‘The Other Boleyn Girl’. Castle or not, it is a most impressive piece of architecture.

Oh, and don’t forget to have a cream tea in the restaurant – the converted 17th century stable block!

Main Entrance, Haddon Hall

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