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Framlingham Castle is currently closed but we hope to reopen on 3 December for pre-booked visits. From Thursday 5 November until Wednesday 2 December we will be keeping a selection of our sites open for local visitors and Members. These sites all have large outdoor spaces, and they can be opened in a way that protects the health of all our visitors, staff and volunteers. We have additional safety measures in place at all of our sites including social distancing, enhanced cleaning and limits on visitor numbers. You will need to book in advance in order to visit, and we ask everyone to please bear in mind the government’s latest advice on essential journeys before you plan your visit. To find out which sites are open, how to book tickets and what to expect when you visit click on the links below. We hope to resume our normal winter opening times from 3rd December, and will update you when we have more news. If you have a booking for while we are closed you will be automatically refunded within 10 working days.
We've made some changes to help keep you safe, and things might be a little different when you visit. We may need to continue making changes as we follow continually evolving Government advice, so we recommend checking this information before your visit. Here's everything you need to know.
Roger Bigod, sheriff of Norfolk, is granted the manor of Framlingham. He builds a timber fortress.
Roger's son Hugh Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk, builds the first stone castle.
Find out more about the history of Framlingham Castle
Henry II confiscates Framlingham to punish Hugh Bigod for his part in a local uprising. Later, after another rebellion against the king, the castle is dismantled.
Roger Bigod II earns back his father's title of Earl of Norfolk and rebuilds the castle with the massive stone walls that survive today. He entertains King John here in 1213.
King John successively besieges the castle during the civil war that follows Magna Carta. The new king, Henry III, restores Roger's castle to him the next year.
New owner Margaret Brotherton is made Duchess of Norfolk, the first Englishwoman to be a duchess in her own right. Henry IV's son John is educated at Framlingham.
John Howard inherits and becomes the 1st Howard Duke of Norfolk. He refurbishes Framingham and dies commanding the king's troops at Bosworth Field.
Thomas Howard regains the title of Duke of Norfolk forfeited at Bosworth, and dies aged 80 at Framlingham.
Mary Tudor inherits Framlingham from her father, and rallies her troops here to fight for the throne after Edward VI dies. As queen, she restores the estate to Thomas Howard.
Elizabeth I executes Thomas, 4th Duke of Norfolk, for his part in a plot to marry Mary, Queen of Scots. Framlingham, now back in royal hands, is neglected.
James I returns Framlingham to the Howards. Heavily in debt, Theophilus Howard sells it to rich lawyer Sir Robert Hitcham.
Under the terms of Hitcham's will, Framlingham Castle becomes a poorhouse. A new poorhouse is built in 1729.
Pembroke College, Cambridge (Hitcham's old college) gives the estate to the Ministry of Works. English Heritage takes over in 1984.
Learn more about the history of Framlingham Castle