Great Britain’s castles are a testament to its incredible heritage. Lords, monarchs, invaders and warlords from across the ages populated every corner of the UK with castles of their own and we continue to enjoy them to this day. Unfortunately, thanks to strict national and local heritage laws, as well as some hefty price tags, few of us will ever get the chance to buy a castle of our own.
Wilton Castle is a Norman structure dating back to before the 12th century, when it was rebuilt with the sandstone we can see today. Sitting in the hamlet of Wilton, Herefordshire, the castle is now on sale for a kingly £1,495,000, and comes complete with the option to buy the title of ‘Lord of Wilton Castle’.
The three surviving towers of the Grade 1 listed property almost look like protective sentinels, which is appropriate given the love and care that has gone into maintaining the building. However, when current owners Alan and Sue Parslow originally bought the property, it was “unlivable.”
“The rampart walls were dangerous - mountains of rubble,” Sue told the Daily Mail. “You couldn’t get upstairs and we had to wear hard hats everywhere.”
Estate Agents Jackson-Stops & Staff call the castle a “rare opportunity” that has been “restored lovingly by the current owners.”
“English Heritage were reluctant at first but we really wanted people to see at least a part of the castle as it would have been,” Sue continued. “We put back floors, doors, leaded windows, roof and chimney. It's been a magnet for romantics. We kept being asked whether we would allow it to be used for weddings, so we applied for a licence.”
Indeed, the state of the castle now is anything but “unlivable”. The beautiful five bedroom house inside the walls was built in the 16th century, by which time the strategic importance of Wilton Castle had all but vanished. It offers a tastefully regal take on rural decor throughout, right down to the charming stained-glass interior windows. The house quickly became a popular destination for weddings, and the license remains operational!
Though the castle’s Norman moat is now dried up, the stream that feeds it continues to run through the castle’s gardens, which are set out over a generous two acres of land.
A true heritage fan will also be happy to know that the property still has plenty of potential, including an unused coach house and a great tower, which Sue and Alan have plans to restore.
Philip is always on the lookout for properties that inspire. He knows how frustrating home improvements and maintenance can be, which is why he covers everything from loft conversions to radiator repair! Phil’s main interest is in modern properties, with a particular soft spot for skyscrapers.