Featured image of Ripley Castle

The History of Ripley Castle

LocationRipley, North Yorkshire, England (Google Map)
Open for VisitorsYes (Currently closed for maintenance work)
Owned byPrivate Owner
Official WebsiteRipley Castle
Rooms AvailableYes (Events, Meetings, Weddings, Dining)

Ripley Castle is a 14th Century country house located in Ripley, North Yorkshire. It is a Grade I listed building with its grounds and gardens listed at grade II. For centuries, the castle has been the seat of the Ingilby family, and over 26 generations have stayed in it. The castle has a deep history that revolves around stories of kings and queens, plagues during the civil war, and secrets related to the knight’s chamber.


In 1308, Sir Thomas Ingleby married Edeline Thwenge and received Ripley Castle land as dowry. He served the court of Edward III. In 1357, he went boar hunting in the royal forest when a wild boar attacked him. Sir Thomas, his oldest son, saved him, and Edward granted him the family’s crest of a boar’s head to show his gratitude.

Sir John Ingleby inherited the castle when he was five years old, and he added the gatehouse to the castle’s structure. Later, he became a monk at Mount Grace Priory, and his son Sir William Ingleby, whom his deserted mother raised, got the castle. He added a tower to the building in 1548. His two sons were passionate Catholics who ran away from the authorities. Francis was caught and hanged, drawn, and quartered in 1586 as the punishment, and David escaped and died on the continent.

James VI of Scotland knighted Sir William, and he stayed in the Ripley castle. Later, Sir William was plotted in Gunpowder charges, but all charges were denied. He fought for the King at Marston Moor in 1644 and lost the Ripley Castle from Oliver Cromwell. However, after reaching the castle, he hid in a secret priest hole, asking to keep Cromwell away. She did the same and didn’t allow Cromwell to search the castle.

Sir William handled the major rebuild of the castle, but later, he got into debt and fled overseas for years. Meanwhile, the castle was managed by Ralph Robinson. Later, between 1790 and 1796, Sir John, the High Sheriff, became MP for East Retford. His son, William, who was also following his father’s steps, adopted the Amcotts-Ingilby surname and rebuilt the Ripley village, including the Ripley castle. He left the castle to his first cousin, Henry John Ingilby. Since then, the castle has been privately owned by the Ingilby family.


Ripley Castle
Ripley Castle by James Dolan licensed under CC BY 3.0

Ripley Castle is a 700 years old premise with magnificent grounds, lakes, walled gardens, hothouses, deer park, and kitchen garden. It is built using squared gritstone and ashlar. It is a two-story block flanked by a tower and a three-story wing at each end. It also has a 260 feet long gatehouse at the south.

The castle’s interior is filled with Gothic Revival decorations, including fine paintings, furnishings, and chandeliers from all over the centuries. It also has the armour, panelling, and Priest’s secret hiding place. The overall castle is filled with collectables of the family and is designed while keeping historical aesthetics and modern needs in mind.

The walled gardens of the Ripley castle add colour to the building. Over 150,000 flowers bloom in the spring season each year in the gardens. The Hot Houses on the premises are filled with an extensive collection of rare vegetables. The acres of pleasure grounds, deer park, and lake make this place a perfect picnic spot. You can spend hours exploring the castle land and get the essence of nature.

There is an art gallery, delicatessen, Farmyard Museum, and charming shops located at the castle’s doorstep. If you want to explore history, nature, and modernity together, Ripley castle is a must-visit.

Movie Features

  • The Flaxton Boys (1964-1973): The Flaxton Boys is a children’s series telecast on Yorkshire, where Ripley castle was featured as the fictional Flaxton hall.
  • Escape from the Dark (1976): Escape from the Dark is a Disney movie where Ripley castle was used as the home of Lord Harrogate.
  • Gunpowder (2017): Gunpowder is a historic BBC series produced by Kudos and Kit Harington’s Thriker films.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Ripley Castle?

Ripley Castle is located in the Ripley village, located 3 miles north of Harrogate in North Yorkshire. It offers a free parking space a few steps away from the castle’s entrance, which offers convenience. It is one of the largest house castles in England and is a delight to visit.

What is Ripley Castle famous for?

Ripley Castle is famous for its exciting history. It is an extraordinary castle that has been the home of the Ingilby family for more than 700 years. It has passed through 26 generations, and each of them has left their trace in it. This castle features the refined Gothic Revival interior and beautiful grounds and welcomes visitors to explore it.

Have you visited this castle before? If yes, why not share some beautiful pictures with us!
You can email us your pictures of the castle at castrumtocastle@gmail.com. Please use the name of the castle in the subject line.
Also, don’t forget to mention your name and social media profile link if you want the credits!

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