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Kinnersley Castle

Beige Marble
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The Castle has changed hands numerous times in its long, interesting life since (possibly) Saxon times, and many families have made their own particular mark. Now there are three generations of the family of Henry Garratt-Adams, who purchased the castle in 1954 when it was under threat of demolition after WWII. 


Previous residents of note include:

Richard de la Bere - father of 21 children, who won his spurs at the battle of Crecy (1346) / their family monument can be found in Hereford Cathedral

Vaughan family(c.1588) - responsible for most of castle as it is today / legends about his uncle “Black Vaughan” and the phantom black dogs are widely recounted 

Francis Smallman - he along with his eldest son was killed in the Civil War

Sir Thomas Morgan - Baronet and Governor of Jersey (1660) 

The Reaveley family (c.1850’s) - their daughter married George Frederick Bodley, the Arts and Crafts architect and designer 

Major Davey - inventor of the Davey Fire Escape - early prototype still hanging on the side of the castle. His sister Doreen landed the biggest ever rod-killed Wye salmon in 1923!

...and the controversial, Nazi-sympathiser Lord Brocket was under house arrest here for a short period during WWII.


There are approximately eight acres of grounds containing some remarkable yew hedges, an orchard, giant cedar tree, walled kitchen garden and one of the largest ginkgo biloba trees in the country. We are licensed with the Soil Association as 'certified organic' and harvest the leaves of our special gingko tree for herbal pharmaceuticals each year.


Next to the castle is the lovely Norman church, St. James Kinnersley, which is also of historical interest. It's home to an unusual 13th c. tower, elaborate wall paintings (designed by Bodley) and the significant Smallman monument of 1633.


Kinnersley Castle is a family-owned, Grade 2* listed historic house located approximately 10 miles from the book town of Hay-on-Wye. It was one of the many Marches castles sited by the Normans along the Welsh border, though as seen today it is predominantly the remodelled Elizabethan manor house of the Vaughan family. Kinnersley Castle features various fine oak-panelled rooms and the original 1588 plasterwork ceiling of the Solar.

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*See TOURS & EVENTS page for open dates

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