Old Wardour Castle
|Old Wardour Castle is
hexagonal and built in the late
14th century as a secure luxurious house for John, 5th Lord Lovel. It was
badly damaged during the English Civil War, but it has survived. It's guest
rooms were designed in the French style of the period.
It was vacated by the
family in 1644 and when they returned in the 1680's it was too much of a
ruin to live in, so they built a smaller residence just outside the castle
wall. During the next 100 years they built and moved into New Wardour a
little distance away, this is a private property today, and left the old
castle as a decorative romantic ruin within the grounds.
The old castle, that you visit today, has no
moat but is
built on the side of a hill and has an enormous lake in it's grounds,
which in fact is now difficult to see from the lower levels of the castle as it has trees all
Other buildings on the site include:
A mock gothic style Banqueting House
which is on the side of part of the lake, and in it's time would have been
used for dining and entertaining. It was build around 1773-4 in the mock
Gothic style that was popular at that time. It had a coloured fireplace of
marble and stained glass windows which is believed to have come from New
Wardour Castle, when the chapel was refurbished.
There is also The Grotto and Stone
Circle. This was the last addition to the landscape in 1792 and built by a
local craftsman Josiah Lane of Tisbury. He was a well-known building of
garden ornaments and features and he was commissioned to build an artificial
cave complete with dripping water, fossils and ferns using some stone from
the ruins of the castle.
The grounds it is set in with the lake and
wooded areas are good photographic subjects, as well as good places to have
Some scenes in the Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves
film with Kevin Costner, was filmed here.
To see the bigger picture click on the
image you want to look more closely at
Old Wardour Castle
taken from the car park. You can see there is a large wall on this side
with the castle behind.
The picture on the right is inside the castle grounds.
Taken whilst sheltering from the rain under the large trees and the main
castle building is in the background.
NOTE: On the day we made this visit it
rained, and there are few shelter spots from heavy rain, a shower you may get
away with sheltering under the trees. However on sunny days it is a haven for
local mums and their children, for birthday parties etc so there can be a lot of
children running about and playing in the ruin so may take longer to get that
perfect photo you are after. There is however lots of open space around the main
castle so getting a good picture of the hole is not difficult.
shown here were taken prior to having Nikon DSLR cameras and we do intend to
Further information Grid
ST 939263 - OS
2 Miles SW of
Tisbury off the A30. Can also be reached from A350, this route is narrow
The drive to the castle is around small
country lanes some of which are very narrow and windy with passing places.
It has it's
own free car park, small amount of hard standing and the overflow goes onto
Audio Tour, Picnic Area, Toilets, Shop.
Things To Do,
See and Photograph:
tower house around a central courtyard. It also has a mock gothic banqueting
house and from certain points within the grounds there are views of a large
fishing lake. Also a grotto and stone circle amongst the trees. Some colour
shrubs out at certain points in the year.
What to take:
Tripod, Grads, Panorama kit, Flash for fill in.
Mar-30 Jun and 1 Sep-30 Sep daily 10am to 5pm
1 Jul-31 Aug daily 10am to 6pm;1 Oct-31 Oct Daily 10am to
Nov-31 Mar Sat-Sun 10am to 4pm
Closed 24-26 Dec and 1 Jan
Heritage Members - Free; Non-Members Adults £3.50; Children £1.80;
photography is allowed in all their grounds, it is not permitted in some
buildings for conservation purposes, usually a no photography symbol is
present on entry to the building where this restriction is in place.
Special Needs Access:
Disabled access to grounds and ground floor of
Special Needs Facilities:
Adapted toilet - key from the Kiosk. Audio
tours available, carvings to touch.
CIN Page Ref:
Date Updated: 04/2008
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