Sep
18

Aydon Castle

Aydon Castle is one of the finest examples of a medieval manor house in England. Robert de Reymes, a wealthy Suffolk merchant, began construction of the house in 1296, at the end of an unusually long period of peace in the border regions. The building is naturally defended on one side by the steep valley of the Cor Burn, but was otherwise unfortified. Unfortunately for de Reymes, the building of his house coincided with a new period of conflict with Scotland which led to frequent Scottish raids throughout the area. Reymes in his haste to build his defences neglected to gain permission to crenellate from the King, and was fined. Having paid the fine the licence to crenellate was issued retrospectively in 1305.These extra defences didn’t stop the Scots from sacking the property in 1315 and again in 1346.

Over the centuries the manor house had numerous owners, many of whom lived elsewhere and leased the property to tenants. As a result the manor was left largely unchanged. The only significant modifications were made during a mid-16th century renovation, and a mid-17th century conversion to a farm. The building remained in use as a farm until 1966, but has since been restored to its medieval appearance.