Langley History

Langley History

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Langley Castle basic history

  • Work started on construction in 1350 for Sir Thomas De Lucy (one of King Edward III’s favourite knights) and his family to protect during times of war with the Scots.

  • Sir Thomas died a year after completion in 1365

  • Langley Castle and the Barony of Langley was handed down to Maud de Lucy, daughter of Sir Thomas, who was married to Gilbert, Earl of Angus and Baron of Prudhoe. He died in 1381 and she then had two baronies and a Castle; soon after married Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland.

  • Maud died in 1389 and Langley was added to her husband Henry Percy’s Castles, Alnwick and Warkworth.

  • De Lucy family laid claims to Langley shortly after; the Castle and barony was eventually transferred back to the family legally by 1441.

  • By 1405 Langley Castle was a roof less shell and gutted by fire.

Unknown whether it was raiders, the Percy family or King Henry V’s own troops to compete the destruction of all associated with the rebels

  • Langley Castle and its barony was passed between various Lords and Earls until 1714, at the time was held by James Earl of Derwentwater and Viscount Langley. He was involved in the Jacobean rebellion and beheaded at the Tower of London for his part.

His brother Charles was also beheaded 40 years later for similar involvement, a stone cross was erected in their memory and is situated on the road up from Haydon Bridge towards the Castle.

  • The Castle was reclaimed by the Crown and, in 1749, was given to the Governors of the Royal Hospital for Seamen in Greenwich as source of income.

  • In 1882 the Castle was purchased by local historian and former High Sheriff of Northumberland Cadwallader Bates.

  • He began the restoration in 1895 after marrying Josephine d’Echarvines; he unfortunately died in 1902 before the restoration was complete.

His wife, Josephine, directed the remaining part of the construction and finished in 1914. She had the chapel constructed in his memory with permission from Pope Leo XIII to use as a family chapel. (The Chapel was restored by the current owner in 2006)

  • Langley was used as a private house for Josephine and her family until 1932

  • During the second world war Langley was used as a barracks, during the 1950’s was girls boarding school and then during the 70’s and 80’s medieval banquets were held regularly.

  • Dr Stuart Madnick purchased the Castle in 1986 and converted it into an eight bedroom hotel.
  • Additional rooms were created in 1994 with the conversion of the old Coach house and Stables, to provide 5 rooms and 3 suites and was called CastleView
  • 1997 saw major refurbishment of the Castle Kitchen and extension to the rear of the Castle
  • 1998 the refurbishment of the Lodge to offer 2 additional guest rooms
  • 2001 The transformation of the front of the Castle and installation of the fountain  and formal gardens
  • 2004 the creation of the Tower room, extension of Garderobe staircase to access the refurbished Chaple
  • The title Baron of Langley came up for sale by Greenwich Hospital in 2007 and was purchased by Dr Madnick who wished the title and Castle to be brought back together.
  • In 2009 work commenced for the building of the second phase of CastleView and provided an additional 8 suites and staff quarters
  • The Glass Pavilion was built in 2012 to provide a natural extension of the Restaurant