The original manor house stood on the site as recorded in the Domesday survey; but now Lullingstone is an historic manor house having been inhabited by the same family for 20 generations.
The present property was started in 1497, with Henry VIII (1491 – 1547) and Queen Anne (1665 – 1714) both being regular visitors. The gatehouse is believed to be the first one in England that was constructed entirely from bricks.
There are a number of interesting features within the Castle and its gardens – a fenced deer park, when the Castle served as the hunting lodge. The grounds are located on the River Darent, but hidden within are Queen Anne’s bathhouse and an 18th century icehouse.
|16th century stained glass - St Botolph's|
The lands contain some of the most ancient oak trees in Britain, wildflowers, a medieval church (St Botolph’s, with the oldest stained glass window in England) ...
... a walled garden, while archaeological finds record a Roman Villa. More recently it was home to the Lullingstone Silk Farm which produced silk for Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation gown.
The walled garden, previously a herb garden, has been converted by the Castle’s current heir – the plant hunter Tom Hart Dyke – into the World Garden ...
|Alpine Planting - the World in Miniature|
... an innovative project whereby the planting is laid out in the shape of a map of the world, paying tribute to the plant hunters of old by displaying these exotics in their rightful country within the horticultural map.
The World Garden plan came about when Tom was kidnapped for 9 months in the Columbian jungle – it was here he opened his diary and began his future ... planning his dream - what an attitude to life.
|A Wire Baobab set amongst aloes at Lullingstone, Kent|
That is L for Lullingstone Castle – where the story of the 20 generations of Hart Dykes continues to be written in to the stained glass of windows which reflect their colours to the plants outside ... part of the ABC series on Aspects of British Castles
Bob Scotney featured Kidwelly Castle, Wales yesterday
St Botolph's Church website - here ... it is very interesting, should you wish to look
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