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Elizabethan Bedchamber, Kenilworth Castle, Kenilworth, Warwickshire

Elizabethan Bedchamber, Kenilworth Castle, Kenilworth, Warwickshire
Photograph taken 2006 © Historic England Archive Photo Library ref: N060496

A reconstruction of the Elizabethan Bedchamber in the first floor gatehouse annex of Leicester's Gatehouse. The original castle at Kenilworth is thought to have been a motte and bailey with wooden buildings, established in the 1120s by Geoffrey de Clinton who built most of the Norman great tower. In 1173-4 it became a royal castle; the stone built fortified keep and curtain wall were built at this time. In 1253 Henry III granted the castle to Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester. In 1361 the castle passed to John of Gaunt (son of Edward III), who developed it as more of a royal palace than a castle. In 1553 the castle was granted to John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland. Following his execution, it returned to the Crown. The grant was renewed to his son, Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester and favourite of Elizabeth I. He made extensive changes to the castle until his death in 1588. During the Civil War, the Royalists initially occupied the castle but it was later held by the Parliamentarians, who demolished the north wall of the keep and the north curtain wall to make the castle indefensible in 1650. This sie is now in the care of English Heritage (2011).