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73 Best Castles and Manor Houses in England (Photos)

Incredible collection of the best and most famous English castles, palaces and manor houses in England. These are truly spectacular homes with a great deal of history to them.
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Warwick Castle is a medieval castle located in Warwick, a county town of Warwickshire, England. It was originally a wooden motte-and-bailey castle built by William the Conqueror in 1068 that was rebuilt into stone in the 12th century. When it was granted to Sir Fulke Greville by James I in 1604, the castle was converted to a country house owned by the Greville family, who became Earls of Warwick later on. Over its 950 years of history, Warwick Castle has been owned by 36 different individuals and currently in the hands of The Blackstone Group.

About the Warwick Castle

  • Where:  Warwickshire, England
  • When:  10th century
  • Who built it: William the Conqueror
  • Style: Medieval
  • What is it now?  Tourist attraction
  • Current owners:  The Blackstone Group

Wouldn’t it be great to spend a month touring castles and manor houses throughout England?  I’d love to do it.  Actually, I could do it throughout Europe.  England offers a collection of some of the finest castles and manor houses in the world as this incredible photo gallery attests to.  We include the famous and arguably best castles and manor houses, but our list also includes lesser known, but also spectacular options.

Scroll through below to enjoy some of the finest castles and manor homes that England has to offer.  Please note, these are in England only, not Ireland or Scotland, both of which have their own incredible castles and mansions.

Herstmonceux Castle located in East Sussex, England is a brick-built castle constructed in the 15th century. It is one of the oldest significant brick buildings still standing in England that was erected by the builders from Flanders. Today, the castle is owned by the Queen’s University and serves as a study centre.

About the Herstmonceux Castle

  • Where:  East Sussex, England
  • When:  15th century
  • Who built it: Builders from Flanders
  • Style: Medieval architecture
  • What is it now?  Study Centre for Queen’s University
  • Current owners:  Queen’s University
Bodium Castle

Bodium Castle

Bodiam Castle was built in 1385 by Sir Edward Dalyngrigge, a former knight of Edward III, with the permission of Richard II, ostensibly to defend the Robertsbridge, East Sussex area against French invasion during the Hundred Years’ War. Bodiam Castle’s possession was passed through several generations of Dalyngrigges, until their line became extinct, and the castle passed by marriage to the Lewknor family. Today, the ownership of the castle is being held by The National Trust and remain in ruins.

About the Bodiam Castle

  • Where:  Robertsbridge, East Sussex, England
  • When:  14th century
  • Who built it: Sir Edward Dalyngrigge
  • Style: Medieval architecture
  • What is it now?  Still in ruins
  • Current owners:  The National Trust
Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle

The Alnwick Castle is a stately home in Alnwick in the English county of Northumberland. It is the seat of the Duke of Northumberland, built after the Norman conquest in the 11th century by a Norman nobleman Ivo de Vesci, and was renovated and remodelled a number of times. Currently, the Alnwick Castle is still the house of the Duke of Northumberland and is open to the public throughout the summer.

About the Alnwick Castle

  • Where:  Alnwick, Northumberland, England
  • When:  11th century
  • Who built it: Norman nobleman Ivo de Vesci
  • Style: Gothic style
  • What is it now?  House of the Duke of Northumberland
  • Current owners:  Duke of Northumberland
Alnwick Castle (close-up)

Alnwick Castle (close-up)

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle

The Windsor Castle in Windsor, Berkshire, England is a royal residence at Windsor popular for its long association with the English and later British royal family and for its architecture. It was originally built in the 11th century following the Norman invasion of England led by William the Conqueror. Today, the Windsor Castle is in use Queen Elizabeth II in right of the Crown and is open to the public via Limited access.

About the Windsor Castle

  • Where:  Windsor, Berkshire, England
  • When:  11th century
  • Who built it: Sir William Whitfield
  • Style: Gothic style, Georgian architecture, Victorian architecture
  • What is it now?  Royal Residence
  • Current owners:  Queen Elizabeth II
Windsor Castle front view

Windsor Castle front view

Highclere Castle (the home in the TV show Downton Abbey)

Highclere Castle (the home in the TV show Downton Abbey)

The Highclere Castle is a country house in Hampshire, England designed by architect Charles Barry in the Jacobethan style. It was constructed in the 17th century built on the foundations of the original medieval palace of the Bishops of Winchester who owned the estate from the 9th century. Today, the castle serves as the country seat of the Earl of Carnarvon, a branch of the Anglo-Welsh Herbert family.

About the Highclere Castle

  • Where:  Hampshire, England
  • When:  17th century
  • Who built it: Architect Charles Barry
  • Style: Jacobethan style / Jacobethan-revival style
  • What is it now?  Seat of the Earl of Carnarvon
  • Current owners:  George Herbert, 8th Earl of Carnarvon
Mount Edgcumbe

Mount Edgcumbe

Mount Edgcumbe House is a stately home in south-east Cornwall built by Sir Richard Edgcumbe in the 16th century. It was the principal seat of the Edgcumbe family since Tudor times until the 7th Earl sold the estate to Cornwall County Council and Plymouth City Council and open the house to the public.

About the Mount Edgcumbe House

  • Where:  Cornwall, England
  • When:  16th century
  • Who built it: Sir Richard Edgcumbe
  • Style: Tudor-gothic style
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Cornwall Council and Plymouth City Council
Kenilworth Castle

Kenilworth Castle

Kenilworth Castle constructed from Norman through to Tudor times has been described by 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”. It survived the six-month-long Siege of Kenilworth in 1266, believed to be the longest siege in English history. The castle also underwent many major changes until it was left in ruins and opened to the public by the Town of Kenilworth maintained by the English Heritage.

About the Kenilworth Castle

  • Where:  Kenilworth, Warwickshire, England
  • When:  11th century
  • Who built it: Geoffrey de Clinton
  • Style: Medieval architecture / Tudor style
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Town of Kenilworth
Arundel Castle

Arundel Castle

The Arundel Castle located in the Arundel, West Sussex, England is a restored and remodelled medieval castle originally built by Roger de Montgomery on Christmas Day in the 11th century. It was restored in the 18th and 19th centuries upon getting damaged in the English Civil War. The castle served as a home and has been in the ownership of the family of the Duke of Norfolk for over 400 years that started back in the 11th century.

About the Arundel Castle

  • Where:  Arundel, West Sussex, England
  • When:  11th century
  • Who built it: Roger de Montgomery
  • Style: Medieval architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Duke of Norfolk
Leeds Castle

Leeds Castle

The Leeds Castle in Kent, England was owned by a Saxon chief called Led or Leed from 857, who built a wooden structure on two islands in the middle of the River Len. The Castle descended through the de Crevecoeur family until it was bought by King Edward I’s Queen, Eleanor of Castile, which became their favorite residence. Today the castle is open to the public maintained by the Leeds Castle Foundation.

About the Leeds Castle

  • Where:  Kent, England
  • When:  11th century
  • Who built it: Robert de Crèvecœur
  • Style: Norman architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Leeds Castle Foundation
Leeds Castle (Aerial View)

Leeds Castle (Aerial View)

Hever Castle

Hever Castle

Hever Castle is located in the village of Hever, Kent and was built in the 13th century as a country house. Constructed by the Boleyns, it became the seat of the Boleyn family for a century. It later came into the possession of King Henry VIII’s fourth wife, Anne of Cleves after the latter’s father Thomas Boleyn died. Today it is open to the public maintained by the Broadland Properties Limited.

About the Hever Castle

  • Where:  Hever, Kent, England
  • When:  13th century
  • Who built it: Boleyn family
  • Style: Medieval architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Broadland Properties Limited
Wray Castle

Wray Castle

Wray Castle located in Claife, South Lakeland, Cumbria is a Victorian neo-gothic building constructed during the 12th century. It was constructed by Liverpudlian surgeon James Dawson using his wife’s fortune. After his death, the property came into possession of several hands and now it is currently open to the public maintained by the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty.

About the Wray Castle

  • Where:  Claife, South Lakeland, Cumbria, England
  • When:  12th century
  • Who built it: Liverpudlian surgeon James Dawson
  • Style: Victorian neo-gothic architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Lulworth Castle

Lulworth Castle

Lulworth Castle is an early 17th-century mock castle located in East Lulworth, Dorset, England. The castle was built as a hunting lodge by Thomas Howard, 3rd Viscount Howard of Bindon that was completed in the early 17th century. The ownership of the castle came into the possession of Humphrey Weld and his descendents, the Weld family still owned the property.

About the Lulworth Castle

  • Where:  East Lulworth, Dorset, England
  • When:  17th century
  • Who built it: Thomas Howard
  • Style: Mock-gothic style
  • What is it now?  Tourist attraction
  • Current owners:  Weld family
Burghley House

Burghley House

Burghley House is a grand sixteenth-century country house located in Cambridgeshire, England. Built by and still lived in by the Cecil family, the property is a leading example of the Elizabethan prodigy house. It is currently open to the public run by the Burghley House Preservation Trust, which is under the Cecil family.

About the Burghley House

  • Where:  Cambridgeshire, England
  • When:  16th century
  • Who built it: Cecil family
  • Style: Elizabethan prodigy style
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Cecil family

The Lowther Castle located in Cumbria, England is a country house in the historic county of Westmorland. It is a property belonged to the Lowther family, latterly the Earls of Lonsdale, since the Middle Ages. It is currently open to the public maintained by the Lowther Estate Trust.

About the Lowther Castle

  • Where:  Cumbria, England
  • When:  17th century
  • Who built it: Robert Smirke
  • Style: Gothic revival architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  Lowther family
Sizergh Castle

Sizergh Castle

The Sizergh Castle and Garden at Helsington in the English county of Cumbria is a stately home and garden owned by the Strickland family until it was gifted to the National Trust in 1950 by Gerald Strickland. It is currently open to the public showcasing the elegant paintings and portraits that it contain.

About the Sizergh Castle

  • Where:  Cumbria, England
  • When:  14th – 15th century
  • Who built it: Strickland family
  • Style: Georgian style
  • What is it now?  Open to the public
  • Current owners:  National Trust
Hampton Court

Hampton Court

Hampton Court Palace is a royal palace in Greater London. It was built Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, a favourite of King Henry VIII during the 16th century. However in 1529, the cardinal gave the palace to the King to check his disgrace and Henry VIII later on enlarged the property. Today, the palace is open to the public and is a major tourist attraction and currently owned by Queen Elizabeth II in right of the Crown.

About the Hampton Court Palace

  • Where:  Greater London, England
  • When:  16th century
  • Who built it: King Henry VIII for Cardinal Thomas Wolsey
  • Style: Baroque architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public / Tourist attraction
  • Current owners:  Queen Elizabeth II in right of the Crown
Mannington Hall

Mannington Hall

Located Near Itteringham, Norfolk, England, Mannington Hall is a moated medieval country house that has been owned by the Walpole family since the 18th century. The first manor that was built on this site was constructed in the 15th century and was renovated during the 19th century. Today it is now owned and occupied by Robert Walpole, 10th Baron Walpole and only open to the public by appointment.

About the Mannington Hall

  • Where:  Norfolk, England
  • When:  15th century
  • Who built it: Walpole family
  • Style: Medieval architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public by appointment only
  • Current owners:  Robert Walpole
Avebury Manor

Avebury Manor

Avebury Manor & Garden is an early-16th-century manor house located in Avebury, near Marlborough, Wiltshire, England. It was built after William Dunch of Little Wittenham in Berkshire purchased the estate in 1551. It is now in the hands of National Trust and is privately occupied.

About the Avebury Manor

  • Where:  Avebury, England
  • When:  16th century
  • Who built it: Richard Holford
  • Style: Georgian style
  • What is it now?  Private property
  • Current owners:  National Trust
Belton House

Belton House

Belton House is a Grade I listed country house that was built in the 16th century. It is located in Belton near Grantham, Lincolnshire, England and was the seat of the Brownlow and Cust family. In 1984, the family gave the house away to the National Trust and is now operating as a popular tourist site and is open to the public.

About the Belton House

  • Where:  Belton, Lincolnshire, England
  • When:  16th century
  • Who built it: Anthony Salvin
  • Style: Carolean architecture
  • What is it now?  Open to the public / Tourist site
  • Current owners:  National Trust
Brodsworth Hall

Brodsworth Hall

Brodsworth Hall is one of the best surviving examples of an upscale Victorian mansion. Built in the Italianate style at the behest of a Swiss banking family, this limestone country house has remained unaltered since the 1860s. Brodsworth Hall is now the property of the English Heritage Foundation and remains open to the public for tours and events.

About the Brodsworth Hall

  • Where: South Yorkshire, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Philip Wilkinson for Charles Sabine Augustus Thellusson
  • Style: Victorian, Italianate
  • What is it now? Open to the public by appointment
  • Current owner: English Heritage
Audley End House

Audley End House

Located on the lush green Essex countryside, the Audley End House is one of the best-preserved examples of Jacobean architecture. As a palace in all but name, this country house has stately gardens and monuments open to public viewing. Once the site of a Benedictine monastery, the Audley End House was the family seat of the Barons Braybrooke for centuries before its transference to English Heritage.

About the Audley End House

  • Where: Essex, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Capability Brown and Robert Adam for Baron Braybrooke
  • Style: Jacobean
  • What is it now? Open to the public by appointment
  • Current owner: English Heritage
Burton Manor

Burton Manor

Built of finely dressed ashlar-stone in 1805 and remodeled a century later, the Burton Manor and Garden holds a prestigious position on England’s National Heritage List. The grounds include a central courtyard, an orangery, terraces, and an expansive parkland. Burton House served as an adult education facility in the 20th century and has been closed for renovation since 2011.

About the Burton Manor

  • Where: Cheshire, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Richard Congreve
  • Style: Neoclassical
  • What is it now? World Heritage Site closed for redevelopment
  • Current owner: Liverpool Corporation
Castle Ashby

Castle Ashby

Built of formidable red sandstone in Norman style, Shrewsbury Castle is one of the oldest and best castles in England. As the first Earl of Shrewsbury, Roger de Montgomery built this castle as a fortification shortly after William the Conqueror’s victorious Battle of Hastings in 1066. While little of the original physical structure remains, visitors can enjoy much of the restored version constructed as early as the 1660s.

About the Castle Ashby

  • Where: Shropshire, England
  • When: 11th century
  • Who built it: Roger de Montgomery
  • Style: Norman
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: Shropshire Council
Shrewsbury Castle

Shrewsbury Castle

Built of formidable red sandstone in Norman style, Shrewsbury Castle is one of the oldest and best castles in England. As the first Earl of Shrewsbury, Roger de Montgomery built this castle as a fortification shortly after William the Conqueror’s victorious Battle of Hastings in 1066. While little of the original physical structure remains, visitors can enjoy much of the restored version constructed as early as the 1660s.

About the Shrewsbury Castle 

  • Where: Shropshire, England
  • When: 11th century
  • Who built it: Roger de Montgomery
  • Style: Norman
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: Shropshire Council
Danesfield House

Danesfield House

Built from 1899 to 1901 under the leadership of W. H. Romaine-Walker, the Danesfield House served as a residence on an estate near the River Thames in Buckinghamshire, England. Sold to the corporate world in 1977, the Danesfield House officially became a hotel and spa in 1991.

About the Danesfield House

  • Where: Buckinghamshire, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: W. H. Romaine-Walker for Robert Hudson
  • Style: Neo-Tudor
  • What is it now? Hotel and spa
  • Current owner: Danesfield House Hotel Ltd

Located on 12 acres of sprawling green in Wiltshire, England, Whatley Manor is one of the best examples of Anglo-Saxon-inspired style. Whatley Manor was originally a farmhouse that T.G. Smith.

About the Whatley Manor

  • Where: Wiltshire, England
  • When: 18th-19th century
  • Who built it: T.G. Smith, Lord of Easton Grey Manor
  • Style: Anglo-Saxon
  • What is it now? Hotel, restaurant, and spa
  • Current owner: Relais & Châteaux
Wraxhall

Wraxhall

This home and estate is one of the finest examples of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture in the region. With its orangery, sawmill, aviary, and kitchen garden, this estate provides a complete picture of life in a bygone period. First the longtime home seat of the Tynte baronets, the estate remained under the ownership of the Gibbs family until 2001. Instead of allowing the estate to sell into private interests once more, the National Trust purchased it for public use in 2002.

About Wraxhall

  • Where: North Somerset, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: William Gibbs
  • Style: Gothic Revival
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Lyme Hall

Lyme Hall

Nestled within beautiful gardens and a deer park, Lyme Hall is a fine blend of several architectural styles. Once the home seat of the Lymes of Leigh, the Elizabethan mansion’s construction first began during the lifetime of Piers Legh VII. About two centuries later, famed architect Giacomo Leoni added Baroque and Palladian elements to the dwelling. The National Trust now manages the estate for public viewing.

About the Lyme Hall

  • Where: Cheshire, England
  • When: 16th century; 18th century
  • Who built it: Piers Legh VII; Giacomo Leoni
  • Style: Elizabethan; Palladian, Baroque
  • What is it now? Open to the public by appointment
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Kirby Hall

Kirby Hall

Blaise Castle

Blaise Castle

With its Ionic columns, stucco, and bas-relief medallions, Blaise Castle is a straightforward example of new-wave classical architecture. Bristol businessman John Hartford commissioned its construction during the 1790s on the estate that also includes an ancient hamlet and folly. The castle is now under the management of the Bristol City Council.

About the Blaise Castle 

  • Where: Bristol, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: William Paty for John Harford
  • Style: Georgian
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: Bristol City Council
Heaton Park

Heaton Park

Seated on the backdrop of a golf course, boating lake, and observatory, Heaton Hall is one of the finest historical monuments in Manchester. Although the land had been occupied since the Middle Ages, construction on the present building began under the instructions of Sir Thomas Egerton in 1772. In 1902, the then-Earl of Wilton sold the residence to the Manchester City Council to serve as a municipal park.

About Heaton Park

  • Where: Manchester, England,
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: James Wyatt for Thomas Egerton, 1st Earl of Wilton
  • Style: Neoclassical
  • What is it now? A museum, park venue
  • Current owner: Manchester City Council
Newby Hall

Newby Hall

Newby Hall is a riverside Georgian complex with great historical significance to North Yorkshire. Built in the 1700s under the direction of Sir Edward Blackett and Sir Christopher Wren, it includes stable blocks, herbaceous borders, woodland walks. Richard Elcock Weddell purchased Newby Hall in the late 1700s, and his indirect descendants (the Compton family) run the establishment today.

About the Newby Hall

  • Where: North Yorkshire, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: Sir Edward Blackett, 2nd Baronet, Sir Christopher Wren
  • Style: Georgian
  • What is it now? Seasonally open to the public
  • Current owner: Lucinda Compton
Oxburgh Hall

Oxburgh Hall

Oxburgh Hall is a moated, medieval great house in Norfolk. Commissioned after the crenellate licensing of Sir Edmund Bedingfeld, it is now open to tours under the management of the National Trust.

About the Oxburgh Hall

  • Where: Norfolk, England
  • When: 15th century
  • Who built it: Sir Edmund Bedingfeld
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Chenies Manor

Chenies Manor

Chenies is a surviving example of a late-medieval manor house. First built under the commission of Sir John Cheyne in the 1400s, the manor enjoyed expansion under the direction of the Russell family. Although no longer a primary residence, Chenies is a regular location for weddings and film settings.

About the Chenies Manor

  • Where: Buckinghamshire, England
  • When: 15th century
  • Who built it: Sir John Cheyne
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Open to paid members, wedding and film venue
  • Current owner: Charles and Boo Macleod Matthews
Witley Court

Witley Court

Witley Court is a ruined Italianate estate. First built for the Foley Baronet, it underwent massive expansions under John Nash, the Earls of Dudley, and Samuel Daukes. The mansion enjoyed acclaim until the loss of the Dudley fortune after World War I. Following the Great Fire of 1937, the mansion fell into disrepair. The Historic England Commission has restored Witley Court as a spectator ruin.

About the Witley Court

  • Where: Worcestershire, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Baron Foley
  • Style: Italianate
  • What is it now? Spectacular ruin, open for viewership
  • Current owner: Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission for England
Wimpole Estate

Wimpole Estate

As the largest house in Cambridgeshire, Wimpole Estate is a fine example of Georgian-style luxury. Built as a family home under the direction of politician Thomas Chicheley, the estate is now a house museum open to the public.

About the Wimpole Estate

  • Where: Cambridgeshire, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Thomas Chicheley
  • Style: Georgian
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Castle Howard

Castle Howard

Bruce Castle

Bruce Castle

Named after the Scottish House of Bruce, this castle is one of the oldest surviving brick castles in England. It has undergone extensive remodeling and has been the family home of people like Sir William Compton, the Barons Coleraine, and Sir Rowland Hill. The Bruce Castle now serves as a museum.

About the Bruce Castle 

  • Where: Tottenham, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: William Compton, Groom of the Stool for Henry VIII
  • Style: Georgian
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: Haringey Council
Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace

As one of the most famous palaces in the world, Buckingham is the London residence and administrative headquarters of the British Royal Family. Famous for its townhouse appearance and grand balcony used to greet crowds, this palace is one of the key landmarks of the modern era.

About the Buckingham Palace

  • Where: Westminster, London, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: Captain William Winde for the 1st Duke of Buckingham
  • Style: Neoclassical
  • What is it now? Residence and administrative headquarters of the monarch of the United Kingdom
  • Current owner: Crown Estates
Sandringham Palace

Sandringham Palace

Sandringham Palace is a private home of the British House of Windsor. It blends Jacobean and Elizabethan architecture and serves as a notable landmark in Norfolk.

About the Sandringham Palace

  • Where: Norfolk, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Albert Edward, Prince of Wales
  • Style: Jacobethan
  • What is it now? Private home of Elizabeth II
  • Current owner: Elizabeth II
Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace is the primary London residence of the British Royal Family. It combines elements of Baroque and Jacobean style and is a well-known cultural symbol of the United Kingdom.

About the Kensington Palace

  • Where: Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, London, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Christopher Wren and Nicholas Hawksmoor for King William III and Queen Mary II
  • Style: Baroque, Jacobean
  • What is it now? Residence of the British Royal Family
  • Current owner: Elizabeth II in right of the Crown Estates
Hatfield House

Hatfield House

Hatfield House is one of the finest examples of Old Jacobean architecture. Built for the Cecil family, it has remained in family ownership through the present and offers visitation and tours by appointment.

About the Hatfield House

  • Where: Hertfordshire, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury
  • Style: Tudor, Jacobean
  • What is it now? Family home and historic landmark; select areas open by appointment only
  • Current owner: Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury
Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace is the only non-royal, non-clerical estate in England to hold the title of a “palace.” A stunning example of English Baroque style, Blenheim Palace remains the house seat of the Dukes of Marlborough. The palace is also registered with the UNESCO World Heritage Center.

About the Blenheim Palace

  • Where: Oxfordshire, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: Sir John Vanbrugh for the Duke of Marlborough
  • Style: English Baroque
  • What is it now? The principal residence of the Dukes of Marlborough
  • Current owner: Jamie Spencer-Churchill and the trustees of the Duke of Marlborough
Chatsworth House

Chatsworth House

Seated on the bank of the River Derwent, the Chatsworth House is an imposing blend of Tudor and English Baroque architecture. Built as a country home for the aristocratic Cavendish family, it remains the house seat of the Duke of Devonshire.

About the Chatsworth House

  • Where: Derbyshire, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Bess of Hardwick and Sir William Cavendish
  • Style: Tudor, English Baroque
  • What is it now? Residence of the Cavendish family, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: Trustees of the Chatsworth Settlement, Duke and Duchess of Devonshire
Hardwick Hall

Hardwick Hall

Located on a beautiful expanse of green in Derbyshire, Hardwick Hall is a historically significant example of Elizabethan architecture. Built under the commission of Bess of Hardwick, this country house features exceptionally large glass windows (earning it the nickname “more glass than wall”). The home is now fully open to the public.

About the Hardwick Hall

  • Where: Derbyshire, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Robert Smythson for Bess of Hardwick
  • Style: Renaissance, Elizabethan
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Wentworth Woodhouse

Wentworth Woodhouse

Wentworth Woodhouse is the largest private residence in England. Boasting the longest façade in Europe, it is a striking example of high-Jacobean architecture. The country house is currently closed for restoration.

About the Wentworth Woodhouse

  • Where: South Yorkshire, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: Thomas Watson-Wentworth, 1st Marquess of Rockingham
  • Style: Jacobean
  • What is it now? Under restoration
  • Current owner: Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust
Crag Hall

Crag Hall

Kenwood House

Kenwood House

Located in Hampstead, London, the Kenwood House is the historically significant ancestral home of the Earls of Mansfield. The home combines elements of Georgian and neoclassical style and houses famous portraits and collections.

About the Kenwood House

  • Where: Hampstead, London, England
  • When: 17th-18th century
  • Who built it: Robert Adam for William Murray, 1st Earl of Mansfield
  • Style: ‎Georgian, neoclassical
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: English Heritage
Longleat House

Longleat House

Longleat House is one of the best examples of early Elizabethan architecture. Built during the 16th century for Sir John Thynne, it remains the house seat for the Marquesses of Bath.

About the Longleat House

  • Where: Wiltshire, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Robert Smythson for Sir John Thynne
  • Style: Elizabethan
  • What is it now? Museum and safari park
  • Current owner: Alexander Thynn, 7th Marquess of Bath
Blickling Hall

Blickling Hall

Blickling Hall is a premier example of fine Jacobean architecture. Built in the 17th century on the ruins of the old estate, it is now a historic house museum open to the public.

About the Blickling Hall

  • Where: Norfolk, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Sir Henry Hobart
  • Style: Jacobean
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Monacute House

Monacute House

Monacute House is a late Elizabethan mansion that has remained nearly unchanged since that era. Originally built for Sir Edward Phelips, it is now a popular museum and film setting.

About the Monacute House

  • Where: Somerset, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Edward Phelips
  • Style: Elizabethan
  • What is it now? Art museum, gallery, scheduled monument, film setting
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Sudeley Castle

Sudeley Castle

As a remarkably intact Norman castle, many people consider Sudeley one of the best castles in England. Located in the lush gardens of Gloucestershire, Sudeley is also one of the few castles in England that still maintains a private residence. As a result, the staterooms and gardens of Sudeley Castle are open for public viewing, but further interior rooms are closed from public view.

About the Sudeley Castle

  • Where: Gloucestershire, England
  • When: 15th century
  • Who built it: Ralph Boteler, 1st Baron Sudeley
  • Style: Norman
  • What is it now? Museum, family residence
  • Current owner: Lady Elizabeth Ashcombe
Somerletyon Hall

Somerletyon Hall

Somerleyton Hall features a recognizable combination of Tudor and Jacobean architecture. Built for John Wentworth, this East Anglian estate remains the house seat of the Barons Somerleyton.

About the Somerletyon Hall

  • Where: Suffolk, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: John Wentworth
  • Style: Tudor, Jacobean
  • What is it now? Family residence
  • Current owner: Hugh Crossley, 4th Baron Somerleyton
Waddesdon Manor

Waddesdon Manor

Built to resemble a grand French château, Waddesdon Manor is one of the most-visited buildings in England. The manor was once the residence of the Rothschild family and is now a museum and a supremely popular tourist destination.

About the Waddesdon Manor

  • Where: Buckinghamshire, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild
  • Style: Neo-Renaissance
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Penhurst Place

Penhurst Place

Penshurst Place is the historically significant ancestral home of the Sidney family. The estate is the most complete surviving example of medieval English and Italianate architecture. Known as the birthplace of Sir Phillip Sidney, the estate has also been the set for numerous films (such as The Princess Bride).

About the Penshurst Place

  • Where: Kent, England
  • When: 14th century
  • Who built it: Sir John de Pulteney
  • Style: Italianate
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: Philip Sidney, 2nd Viscount De L’Isle
Ickworth House

Ickworth House

A striking example of neoclassical architecture, the Ickworth House is the historic seat of the Marquesses of Bristol. This Suffolk building is now a tourist attraction under the management of the National Trust.

About the Ickworth House

  • Where: Suffolk, England
  • When: 18th-19th century
  • Who built it: Frederick Hervey, 4th Earl of Bristol and Bishop of Derry
  • Style: Neoclassical
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Holker Hall

Holker Hall

Holker Hall is one of the largest private residences in Cumbria. A fine example of Jacobean Revival architecture, it is open for tours on an admission-fee basis.

About the Holker Hall

  • Where: Cumbria, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: George Webster
  • Style: Jacobean Revival
  • What is it now? Residence, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: Lord Cavendish
Coughton Court

Coughton Court

With its elegant crenelated façade directly facing the main road, Coughton Court is one of the grandest examples of Tudor and English Renaissance architecture. Originally the home of the Throckmorton family, it is now an attraction under the National Trust.

About the Coughton Court

  • Where: Warwickshire, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Sir George Throckmorton
  • Style: Tudor, English Renaissance
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Holkham Hall

Holkham Hall

Holkham Hall is one of the best-preserved examples of Palladian Revival architecture. The building remains the house seat of the Earls of Leicester and a tourist attraction.

About the Holkham Hall

  • Where: Norfolk, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: William Kent and Lord Burlington for Thomas Coke, 1st Earl of Leicester
  • Style: Palladian Revival
  • What is it now? Residence and tourist attraction
  • Current owner: Earls of Leicester of Holkham
Hutton in the Forest

Hutton in the Forest

Built on an ancient fortress and medieval stronghold, Hutton in the Forest is one of the best-known examples of Gothic Revival style. The estate includes a peel tower dating back to the Middle Ages along with a walled garden, and the entire estate remains the property of the Barons Inglewood.

About Hutton in the Forest

  • Where: Cumbria, England
  • When: 17th century
  • Who built it: Fletcher-Vane Baronetcy
  • Style: Gothic Revival
  • What is it now? Seasonally open to the public
  • Current owner: Barons Inglewood
Bowood House

Bowood House

Bowood House is a Georgian stately home that remains the residence of the Lansdowne family. The extensive Italianate terrace gardens represent a popular tourist attraction.

About the Bowood House

  • Where: Wiltshire, England
  • When: 18th century
  • Who built it: Sir Orlando Bridgeman, 2nd Baronet
  • Style: Georgian
  • What is it now? Residence, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: Lansdowne family
Osborne House

Osborne House

Osborne House is a former royal residence now open for public visitation. Built in Italian Renaissance style, the grounds feature extensive forestry and cottages.

About the Osborne House

  • Where: Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Thomas Cubitt for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert
  • Style: Italian Renaissance
  • What is it now? Open to the public
  • Current owner: English Heritage
Durham Castle

Durham Castle

Durham Castle is a formidable Norman structure that refer to as one of the best castles in England. Originally built to honor the Norman Conquest of 1066, it served as a bishop’s castle for centuries. Durham Castle is now a residential dormitory for the University of Durham, and its Great Hall is a student dining room.

About the Durham Castle 

  • Where: Durham, England
  • When: 11th century
  • Who built it: Bishop of Durham
  • Style: Norman
  • What is it now? Dormitory
  • Current owner: University of Durham
Belvoir Castle

Belvoir Castle

Belvoir is the stately home of the Manners family and is the house seat of the Dukes of Rutland. Built over centuries in Gothic Revival style, it is open to public tours on select dates.

About the Belvoir Castle 

  • Where: Leicestershire, England
  • When: 18th-19th century
  • Who built it: James Wyatt for Duke of Rutland
  • Style: Gothic Revival
  • What is it now? Residence, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: David Manners, 11th Duke of Rutland
Ripley Castle

Ripley Castle

The Ripley Castle is the house seat of the Ingilby baronets in North Yorkshire, England. Built in the 14th century, it is one of the best examples of early-Tudor architectural style.

About the Ripley Castle 

  • Where: North Yorkshire, England
  • When: 14th century
  • Who built it: Ingilby baronets
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Residence, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: Ingilby family
Manor house in Eton Dorney Berkshire

Manor house in Eton Dorney Berkshire

The Manor house in Eton Dorney Berkshire is a medieval residence sold to Sir William Garrard in 1542. Garrard’s descendants, the Palmer family, added Victorian elements to the home in the 19th century and continue to use it as a family residence in the present day.

About the Manor House

  • Where: Buckinghamshire, England
  • When: 15th century, 19th century
  • Who built it: Palmer family
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Residence
  • Current owner: Palmer family
Cotehele Manor House

Cotehele Manor House

Cotehele Manor is a medieval building with additional Tudor elements. Built under the direction of Sir Richard Edgcumbe and his son, the house remains one of the least-altered medieval buildings in Cornwall.

About the Cotehele Manor House

  • Where: Cornwall, England
  • When: 15th century
  • Who built it: Sir Richard Edgcumbe and Sir Piers Edgcumbe
  • Style: Tudor, Medieval
  • What is it now? Museum
  • Current owner: National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty
Barrington Court

Barrington Court

Barrington Court

Barrington Court

Barrington Court is an impressive Tudor manor house in Somerset, England. Built for the Clifton family in the 16th century, it changed ownership several times before its conversion into a tenant farm by the 19th century. After a complete renovation in the 20th century, the house has remained under management with the National Trust.

About the Barrington Court

  • Where: Somerset, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Clifton family
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Tourist attraction
  • Current owner: National Trust
Avebury Manor

Avebury Manor

Built on the site of a priory of St Georges de Boscherville, Avebury Manor is an example of the architectural transition from medieval to Tudor style. Originally the property of the Dunch family, it is now a tourist attraction open to the public.

About the Avebury Manor

  • Where: Wiltshire, England
  • When: 16th century
  • Who built it: Dunch family
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Tourist attraction
  • Current owner: National Trust
Ascott House

Ascott House

Ascott House is a Tudor building on a vast estate in Buckinghamshire, England. Leopold de Rothschild expanded the original farmhouse property into a country house in the 1870s. The location is now a sporting venue and tourist destination.

About the Ascott House

  • Where: Buckinghamshire, England
  • When: 19th century
  • Who built it: Leopold de Rothschild
  • Style: Tudor
  • What is it now? Sports venue, tourist attraction
  • Current owner: National Trust
Ascott House

Ascott House

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