Eresby Castle

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Venue Type & Location

Private Residence

Site Name: Eresby Castle
Location: Eresby Castle
County: Lincolnshire
Location Type: Countryside - at determined location


The castle of the Willoughby family was located on the S edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds. A 16th c. brick residence was built by Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, to the S of the medieval site.

Only remains of the moat, the entrance avenue, a walled garden and the 16th c. stable block are visible now.

Performance History

Probable performance venue. No medieval household records survive to prove that entertainers patronized by Robert, 6th Baron Willoughby de Eresby, performed at home as well as elsewhere in the N in the mid-15th c.

Current Status

Long demolished.

History of the Venue

1276 John, 1st Baron Bec, granted licence to crenellate.

1302 Acquired by Sir William de Willoughby via marriage with the heiress, Alice de Bec.

15th c. Alterations made.

ca. 1540 Eresby became a minor residence after Katherine Willoughby married Charles Brandon, who rebuilt Grimsthorpe on a grand scale as their principal residence. He also built a new house at Eresby, including a formal garden, ponds and bowling green (Marjoram, 'Eresby' 80).

1769 House destroyed by fire.

1960s The owner, J. Saul, had the moat dredged. Further excavations revealed part of the outline of the medieval house, including a round tower with buttresses, the kitchen and tiled floor of the great hall.

Record Source

REED York 1.70, 72

Patrons who owned this venue

Name Dates Titles
Bertie, Peregrine 1555-1601 13th Baron
Bertie, Robert 1582-1642 14th Baron , 1st Earl of , Knight of the
Willoughby, Robert de 1385-1452 6th Baron

Bibliographic Sources

  • King, David J. Cathcart. Castellarium Anglicanum: An Index and Bibliography of the Castles in England, Wales and the Islands. 2 vols. Millwood, NY, London and Nendeln, Liechtenstein: Kraus International Publications, 1983.
  • Leach, Terence R. Lincolnshire Country Houses & their Families. 2 vols. Lincoln: Laece Books, 1990–1.
  • Leland, John. The Itinerary of John Leland in or about the Years 1535–1543. Lucy Toulmin Smith, ed. 5 vols. London: Centaur, 1964.
  • Marjoram, J. ‘Eresby Manor House, Spilsby.’ . . A Prospect of Lincolnshire. Naomi Field and Andrew White (eds). Lincoln: F.N. Field & A.J. White, 1984.
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus, and John Harris. Lincolnshire. 1964. The Buildings of England. London: Penguin Books, 1998.
  • Salter, Mike. The Castles of the East Midlands. Malvern: Folly Publications, 2002.
  • Smith, H. Cotton. The Town of Sir John Franklin: A History of Spilsby in Lincolnshire. Spilsby: The Spilsby Printing Company, 1892.
  • Wilson, C.M. 'Archaeological Notes, 1970.' Lincolnshire History and Archaeology 6 (1971): 11.