Dolbadarn Castle – Castle Review

Built: Between 1220s and 1230s Location: Caernarfon LL55 4UB History: Dolbadarn Castle is a fortification built by the Welsh prince Llywelyn the Great during the early 13th century, at the base of the Llanberis Pass, in northern Wales. The castle was important both militarily and as a symbol of Llywelyn’s power and authority. The castle features a large stone keep, which historian Richard Avent considers “the…

Calke Abbey

Built: 1701 (construction started) Location: Derby DE73 7JF History: The site was an Augustinian priory from the 12th century until its dissolution by Henry VIII. The present building, named Calke Abbey in 1808, was never actually an abbey but is a Baroque mansion built between 1701 and 1704. The house was owned by the Harpur family for nearly 300 years until it was passed to the Trust in 1985…

Kedleston Hall

Built: 1759 (construction started) Location: Derby DE22 5JH History: Kedleston Hall is an English country house in Kedleston and is the seat of the Curzon family. Today it is a National Trust property. The Curzon family have been in Kedleston since at least 1297, and have lived in a succession of manor houses near to or on the site of the present Kedleston Hall. The present house was…

Valle Crucis Abbey

Built: 1553-1560s Location: Llangollen LL20 8DD History: Valle Crucis was truly Welsh from the moment it was founded in 1201 by Prince Madog ap Gruffydd and the ‘white monks’ of the Cistercian order. Its Latin name (Valley of the Cross) refers to the nearby ninth-century Pillar of Eliseg, erected for the glory of a Welsh chieftain. Monks had…

Anne Hathaway’s Cottage

Built: 1463 Location: Stratford-upon-Avon CV37 9HH History: Anne Hathaway’s Cottage was originally a farmhouse. It was built in 1463 of cruck construction when the building would have comprised of just three rooms. The kitchen and parlor still remain from the original medieval construction. The first Hathaway to live in the cottage was Anne’s grandfather John Hathaway, who was a…

Chatsworth House

Built: 1553-1560s Location: Bakewell DE45 1PP History: Chatsworth House is a stately home in Derbyshire, England, in the Derbyshire Dales 3.5 miles northeast of Bakewell and 9 miles west of Chesterfield. The seat of the Duke of Devonshire, it has been home to the Cavendish family since 1549. Review: So this trip came about thanks to the bank holiday…