Given the peaceful tranquility and stunning landscape of its surroundings, one could be forgiven for thinking that the striking mediaeval citadel of Langley Castle was built in the wrong place. The 7 foot thick stone walls however, alude to the great turbulence of its 14th century origins.
Fortunately, Langley today offers exquisite luxury and fine dining amongst some of the best preserved architecture from Medieval England, snuggled between the Northumberland national park and the North Pennines area of outstanding natural beauty.
History of Langley Castle:
As a military stronghold the Langley Castle estate passed into the ownership of the Earls of Derwentwater in the 17th Century who became entwined in the military overtures between England and Scotland. After the glorious revolution in 1688, the Catholic King James II was removed from the throne to be replaced by the Protestant William of Orange. James died in exile but his son, also James, raised a rebellion to restore absolute monarchism. The so called Jacobite rebellion was quickly crushed with the unfortunate Earls of Derwentwater backing the losing side. It cost them their heads and the family their estate as Parliament temporarily suspended Habeus corpus (the right to fair trial) and confiscated all Jacobite lands. The lands having been confiscated were taken for the crown. Ironically, in a role reversal so common in history, it was this abuse of power that Parliament had wanted to prevent by removing absolute monarchy; and the kind of absolute power that the Jacobites had been looking to restore! Read More
Interesting facts about Langley Castle:
1. The castle’s first resident was Sir Thomas de Lucy who was a favourite of the reigning monarch King Edward III. Sir Thomas had fought alongside Edward during the King’s invasion of France and seizure of Normandy. In particular, he had proved his courage at the Battle of Crecy which had proved a crushing victory for the English army. Despite his warmongering on the continent, King Edward was acutely aware of the threat from the North and commissioned the building of Langley as a reward for Sir Thomas. It also allowed the King to have a stronghold in the North against Scottish raiders. As recently as 1314, Northumbria had been devastated by King Robert Bruce of Scotland...Read More