Castle Hotel in Original Northumberland 14th Century Keep
One of the travel joys of going to Europe is the charm and history of sleeping where the lords and ladies of the manor once did. Or something like it, anyway. Many castles still dot the English landscape, some ruins, some royal residences, some museums and ancestral homes. Finding a castle hotel to actually stay requires a little more discovery. Very often the rooms at a castle hotel are in a former stable or outbuilding, especially if the main castle is still occupied by the owner. In England’s north Tyne River Valley of Northumberland, near the quaint ancient market town of Hexham is Langley Castle, one of the finest remaining 14th Century castles in England with rooms within the original walls.
The history of northern England is dominated by the border struggles between Scotland and the English royalty. The origin of Langley Castle is the direct result of the Scottish border wars, built in 1365 during the reign of Edward III to provide a fortified home along the disputed border aera for the Baron of Langley, Thomas de Lucy, who had distinguished himself the Battle of Crecy in France. Over the years, the castle and estate fell into many hands, and finally was forfeited to the crown along with the heads of the Earls of Derwentwater who picked the wrong side in the Jacobite rebellions of the 1715. Mostly abandoned, the castle was restored in the 1880’s to its original structure and the ten acres of wooded grounds which now remain, much its first occupants would recognize.
Inside the simple and single square keep of 7 foot thick stone walls, the structure has been converted entirely into a hotel and restaurant awarded as one of Northern England’s best small hotels. There are nine themed rooms within the castle itself, each individually unique with four poster beds, some with sauna or semi-sunken tubs, and several more rooms available in the Castleview Lodge, a listed historical building on the grounds. The tower with its central wooden spiral staircase with gothic stonework niches was constructed with rooms on several floors intended to garrison troops, but now conveniently providing for the additions of the hotel rooms. The lovely hotel restaurant with its medieval decorating gives the feeling of a lord's dining hall, while the original Grand Hall of the castle on the upper floor now serves as a warm and cosy beamed drawing room for hotel guests.
Staying in one of the nine rooms of the castle itself are at a somewhat higher rate than in the Castleview rooms on the grounds, but all guests have access to the common rooms in the castle. Room prices are per person double occupancy ranging from 64 to 84 pounds (single rates are higher) in the Castleview Lodge and 114 to 125 pounds sterling inside the castle keep. Mid-week and weekend breaks are offered at a discount with dinner in the award winning restaurant included in some of the deals. Perfect for a northern England honeymoon. Weddings and hosted events are also offered.
Langley Castle offers an excellent base for exploring the amazing Roman ruins of Hadrian’s Wall, the engineering marvel constructed as the first barrier between England and the Scots (see Hadrian's Wall), the northern Lake District, Southern Scotland andthe fine early gothic cathedral and former monastery of Hexham (see Hexham Abbey), where the medieval town square has been the location of a farmers and crafts market since Anglo-Saxon days. © Bargain Travel Europe
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