Framlingham: Your chance to live in a castle

IT’S said that an Englishman’s home is his castle – now here’s a chance to have a castle as your home.

An unique opportunity has arisen to rent a house within the walls of Framlingham Castle.

The 12th Century fortress, owned by English Heritage, brings in thousands of tourists a year – but once the staff and the sightseers have left for the day, the new tenants of The Red House will have the vast grounds as their own private space.

Estate agent Clarke and Simpson is letting out the three-bedroom house which was previously used as staff accommodation.

The large family home adjoins the castle walls. The red brick building once formed part of the poorhouse of the 18th and 19th Centuries. In earlier times it would have been the site of The Great Hall.

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The house, built in 1729, has recently been modernised but retains early features including exposed beams, fireplaces and windows with leaded light windows.

Hayden Foster, of Clarke and Simpson, said: “I was very surprised to get the phone call on this one – I didn’t realise that properties like this would come on to the market.

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“It really is an unique opportunity. There has been a lot of interest – it’s created quite a buzz around the town – and we’ve got some viewings lined up.”

Steve Bax, operations manager for English Heritage, said: “It will be a fantastic experience for whoever is lucky enough to get it.

“Even in the summer, when the visitors go at 6pm and the staff have tidied up, you will have the place to yourself.”

The imposing fortress dominates the skyline above the market town of Framlingham. The castle has 12 hollow towers which are connected by a large curtain wall which is 13m high and 2.5m thick.

The castle was built by Roger Bigod, the 1st Earl of Norfolk, to replace his father’s castle, which Henry II had destroyed in 1175.

It has a rich and chequered past. In 1553, King Edward VI gave the castle to his sister, Mary Tudor, and it was there she learned she had been made Queen.

Her successor, Queen Elizabeth, used the fortress as a prison for priests who defied the new Church of England.

Part of the former poorhouse building that includes The Red House now hosts the castle’s visitor centre and exhibition.

- The Red House is up for rent for �850 per month. For more information call Clarke and Simpson on 01728 724200 or go to

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