Sudeley Castle

The Loveliest Castle in England?

Chapter 5 : Early History

The original Saxon holding of Sudeleagh was given to his daughter, Godgifu, by King Aethelred the Unready in the tenth century on her marriage to Dreux, Count of Mantes. Her grandson, one Harold de Sudeley, owned the estate at the time of the conquest and unusually did not have his land confiscated.

The de Sudeleys quickly married into the Norman incoming families and served the Crown until John de Sudeley chose to support the Empress Matilda against King Stephen. He was punished by the destruction of the castle. The castle was eventually rebuilt, and the de Sudeley’s continued in residence until the mid-fifteenth century when the estate passed to a nephew of the last de Sudeley.