The Castles include Thurland which has been converted into luxury apartments and Westhanger. Both castles belonged to Queen Katherine’s ancestors.
Westhanger was part of her maternal grandmother’s family, the Fogges of Kent, from 1461 to 1509. Jane Fogge was a daughter of Sir John Fogge, who married a cousin and lady to Queen Elizabeth (consort of Edward IV).
In 1509, the two manors of Ostenhanger and Westenhanger which stood here were merged into one ownership by Sir Edward Poynings and we know from historic papers that he began to build magnificently. Unfortunately he died with the work incomplete in 1522 but his son, Sir Thomas Poynings, went on with the building, later exchanging Westenhanger with King Henry VIII for other lands.
By 1544 we know that the house was extensive and incorporated separate suites of rooms for the use of royalty. Later Queen Elizabeth I visited ‘her house at Westenhanger’. (From their official site)
Impressive though Westenhanger is, it isn’t the only castle with a history to be proud of on sale. Thurland was home to Queen Katherine’s paternal great-grandmother’s family; Alice, daughter of Sir Thomas Tunstall. Thurland Castle in Lancashire, although split into several apartments, still retains its moat and was owned by Sir Bryan Tunstall, a heroic soldier immortalised in a poem by Sir William Raleigh.
He was a hero of the Battle of Flodden in 1513, and was dubbed the ‘Stainless Knight’ by King Henry VII. He was followed by his son Marmaduke, who became High Sheriff of Lancashire.