Old Bolingbroke Castle
Open all year, daily 1st April to 30th September : 09.00 - 21.00 1st October to 31st March : 09.00 - 19.00 Bolingbroke Castle is in the village of Old Bolingbroke.
It is signposted off the Coningsby to Spilsby A155 road between East Kirkby and West Keal and the B1195 road between Horncastle and Spilsby. Location Map.
Today, only the lower sections of this 13th. Century castle remain. It was built in about 1220 by Randulph de Blundevill, Earl of Lincoln. However, by 1815, the last remaining part - the gatehouse - had collapsed.
The original walls were in an irregular hexagon with round towers on five of the corners. The gate was two towers built about three metres apart. Leading to a portcullis further inside, was a drawbridge spanning the moat. The moat encircled an area about 80 metres in diameter. The six walls were two metres wide and varied in length from 15 to 30 metres long.
Henry Bolingbroke was born here in 1366; he later became Henry IV, king of England.
In 1367, Henry, son of John of Gaunt (Duke of Lancaster) was born and
became heir to the castle. Later he became King Henry IV of England. Once
Henry became King in 1399 he never visited the castle again.
From Tudor times on, the castle became dilapidated so by 1600 only the gatehouse and a tower were in habitable use.
The castle was besieged in October 1643 by the Parliamentarians. On October 11th the Battle of Winceby was fought. The Parliamentarians triumphed over the Royalists, a victory repeated at Marston Moor the following year.
After the Civil War Bolingbroke Castle was pulled down so that it could not serve as a rallying point for a Royalist resurgence. The remains of the castle have been excavated from the accumulated debris of the past 300 years.