Framlingham Castle, Suffolk

Framlingham Castle

Framlingham is a market town and civil parish in the Suffolk Coastal District of Suffolk, England. Commonly referred to as "Fram" by the locals, it is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is mentioned in the Domesday Book. It has a population of 3,114 at the 2001 census. Nearby villages include Earl Soham, Kettleburgh, Parham, Saxtead, and Sweffling. Why not rent one of our welcoming country cottages in Suffolk, England from where you can easily explore the Suffolk countryside and the Suffolk coast.

Framlingham Castle Suffolk - Exterior View

Framlingham Castle Features

Framlingham has a conservation area. The medieval Framlingham Castle is a major feature. The town is home to the summer arts festival Arts Framlingham, Framlingham Castle, the comprehensive secondary school Thomas Mills High School, the independent school Framlingham College, St Michael the Archangel church and Framlingham Town football club (see below). It is also home to the two oldest working post office pillar boxes in the United Kingdom which date from 1856 and can be seen at Double Street and College Road.

Framlingham Castle Suffolk - Interior View

It is also home to one of the smallest houses in Britain, known as "The Check House". Converted into a two-storey residence of almost 29 square metres, the former bookmakers office is in the Mauldens Mill Estate in the town centre. The ground floor measures 6.1m x 2.2m.

In 2006, Country Life magazine voted Framlingham the number one place to live in the country.

Framlingham Castle History

Framlingham Castle is a castle in the market town of Framlingham in Suffolk in England. An early motte and bailey or ringwork Norman castle was built on the Framlingham site by 1148, but this was destroyed by Henry II of England in the aftermath of the revolt of 1173-4. Its replacement, constructed by Roger Bigod, the Earl of Norfolk, was unusual for the time in having no central keep, but instead using a curtain wall with thirteen mural towers to defend the centre of the castle. Despite this, the castle was successfully taken by King John in 1216 after a short siege. By the end of the 13th century, Framlingham had become a luxurious home, surrounded by extensive parkland used for hunting.

During the 15th and 16th centuries Framlingham was at the heart of the estates of the powerful Mowbray and Howard families. Two artificial meres were built around the castle, which was expanded in fashionable brick. With a large, wealthy household to maintain, the castle purchased supplies from across England and brought in luxury goods from international markets. Extensive pleasure gardens were built within the castle and older parts redesigned to allow visitors to enjoy the resulting views. By the end of the 16th century, however, the castle fell into disrepair and after the final Howard owner, Theophilus, entered into financial difficulties the castle and the surrounding estates were sold off.

Framlingham Castle was given to Pembroke College as a philanthropic gesture in 1636, after which the internal buildings were taken down to make way for the construction of a poorhouse within the site. The castle was used in this way until 1839 when the facility was closed; the castle was then used as a drill hall and as a county court. In 1913, Pembroke College donated Framlingham to the Commissioner of Works. During the Second World War, Framlingham Castle was used by the British military as part of the regional defences against a potential German invasion. Today, Framlingham Castle is a scheduled monument and a grade I listed building, owned by English Heritage and run as a tourist attraction.

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