Lulworth Castle

Lulworth Castle, Dorset
Photo © Mike Searle, 30 June 2008

Lulworth Castle, Dorset
Photo © Chris Shaw, 7 August 2003

Lulworth Castle, Dorset
Photo © Mike Searle, 22 Jne 2008

Lulworth Castle, in East Lulworth, Dorset, situated south of Wool, is an early 17th century mock castle. The stone building has now been re-built as a museum.

In 1610 Lulworth Castle was built as a hunting lodge by Thomas Howard, 3rd Lord Bindon, who was the son of the 2nd Duke of Norfolk. In 1641 Humphrey Weld purchased it from Howard. A chapel was built in 1786.

The castle was gutted by fire in 1929 and was left as a roofless ruin, the family building a new residence for themselves nearby. In the 1970s restoration work begun with the help of the English Heritage.

The restoration, finished in 1998, includes a new roof and restored surviving walls in the interior, but no new internal walls or replacements for the destroyed upper floors have been constructed.

The castle is still owned by the Weld Family and is a tourist attraction, holding medieval-themed events. This family owned a number of other properties, including Stonyhurst Hall (donated to the Society of Jesus in 1793 by Thomas Weld father of Thomas Cardinal Weld).

Isabel Weld Perkins believed her American Weld family and the Weld family of Ludworth Castle to be one and the same. Accordingly, she and her husband Larz Anderson remodeled their palatial Brookline, Massachusetts home to resemble it.

In July 2008 and 2009 the grounds played host to the music festival Camp Bestival, a 10-15,000 capacity event including performers such as Chuck Berry, The Flaming Lips and Kate Nash.

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