UEHHA - The Europe of Private Historic Houses
Name: CHILLINGHAM CASTLE
Address: Chillingham Alnwick Northumberland NE66 SNJ
Owner: Sir Humphry Wakefield Bt
Web Site: www.chillingham_castle.com
Period of construction: One S.E. tower 12th C. Remaining towers 13/14th
For whom built: The Grey Family ,except for the initial tower
Architect: Ancient architect N/K 18th C. work Paterson of Edinburgh. Grounds Lancelot Brown and Wyatville.
History: The 12th Chillingham Stronghold was captured by the Grey family in 1246. Chillingham became a fully
fortified castle in the 14th C. when Sir Thomas Grey was granted the Royal Licence in 1344 to fortify Chillingham and
convert it into a fortress which exists now. Wrapped in the nations history it occupied a strategic position as a fortress
during Northumberland’s bloody border feuds, often besieged and at many times enjoying the patronage of royal
visitors. In Tudor days there were additions but the underlying Medieval character has always been retained.
ARCHITECTURAL AND ARTISTIC DATA
Artistic and architectural data: History books Northumberland records and National archives are full of such detail
which is entirely Mediaeval in base with 16thC. Additions, Sir Walter Scott described the castle as having “the true
rust of the baron’s work”. The Chillingham Wild Cattle have roamed the parkland arguably, since roman days, the
exploits of the castle and its owners are well recorded. In the late 18 thC. Edinburgh architect Paterson added stables
and kitchens. In the early 19thC. Wyatville added lodges and avenues. However the basic format remains of a four
towered mediaeval fortress.
PARK AND GARDENS
Gardens and park: The Italian ornamental garden landscaped avenues and gate lodges were created in 1820 by Sir
Jeffrey Wyatville, fresh from his triumph at Windsor Castle. The castle grounds command fine views of the
surrounding countryside. As you walk to the lake, you will see, according to the season, drifts of snowdrops, daffodils
or bluebells and an astonishing display of rhododendrons.
An ornamental lake, woodland walks, superb views of the cheviots, the Italian garden has Mark Wallinger’s Ecco
Home, a statue which stood on the empty plinth in Trafalgar Square. At the end of the central Waytvill Avenue stands
a superb equestrian statue.
Monuments or interesting sites to visit in the neighbourhood: In the local church is the 1420 alabaster
monument to Sir Ralph and Lady Grey. There can be few more beautiful sculptures in the country.
V House V Garden
Opening times (months and days):
From 1st May until 30th September: everyday except Saturday.
Grounds and tea room: 11:30 am – 5:00 pm
House: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
(last admission 4:30 pm)
Adults: £ 4.50 – Oap’s: £ 4.00 – Children under 16: £ 2.00; under 5: free admission.
Guided tours: Available all the year by prior arrangement.
V Facilities for the disabled: non available
V Book shop and Gift shop
V Sale of property related products: plants
V Coffee house (capacity 40 people): tea room
Restaurant (capacity … people)
Buffet (capacity … people):
V Weddings (capacity 100 people):
V Film and photographic location: yes
V Guest rooms in the House: seven self catering apartments (six within the castle)
Hotels in the neighbourhood:
V Cultural events: a variety of events are organized relating to restoration, wild life, and the arts.
V Exhibitions: various.
V Concerts: various. Mainly opera or classical music
V Meetings /Conferences: very welcome (100 people)
Photography: V Inside V Outside
V Sport: clay, pigeon, fishing
Sir Humphry is president of the Northumberland National Park search rescue team patron of the Northumberland
based international centre of search and research (the study of the behavioural patterns of lost people) and off
medicine for Chernobyl, a charity started to offer holiday opportunities to Chernobyl stricken young. Patron of
shadowdance a centre of handicapped young and president of the Avison Ensemble, a musical group who bring the
opportunity of hearing about classical music to a wide local audience.
Cultural events relating to all of these Charitable enterprises and ideas for funding or practical involvement in these
activities is welcome.
By car: turn off A1 onto B6348 and follow signs.
By railway: Alnmouth or Berwick upon Tweed. (20 miles)
By plane: Newcastle International or Edinburgh International Airports (50 miles)