Thurland Castle seen though the arch of the gateway of the bridge crossing the moat
|Location||Between Cantsfield and Tunstall, Lancashire, England|
|OS grid reference||SD 611 731|
|Architect||Paley and Austin|
|Architectural style(s)||Elizabethan Revival and
|Designated||4 October 1967|
Thurland Castle is a former country house, surrounded by a moat, and located in parkland between the villages of Cantsfield and Tunstall, Lancashire, England. It is designated by English Heritage as a Grade II* listed building.
The earliest existing fabric dates from the 14th century, and in 1402 Sir Thomas Tunstall was given a licence to crenellate the building. It then passed down through his son Thomas to Bryan, a hero of the Battle of Flodden in 1513, who was dubbed the "Stainless Knight" by the king and immortalised in the poem Marmion - A Tale of Flodden Field by Sir Walter Scott. Bryan's son Marmaduke was High Sheriff of Lancashire for 1544. After two or three further generations of Tunstalls the castle was sold to John Girlington in 1605, and passed to his grandson, Sir John Girlington, a Royalist major-general during the Civil War. The castle was badly damaged by Parliamentarian forces during a siege in 1643, following which it was described as being "ruinous". Sir John's son, also John, was High Sheriff of Lancashire for 1663.
Work was done on the building to convert it to a country house in 1810 by Jeffry Wyattville, and in 1826–29 by George Webster, but in 1876 it was gutted by fire. The owner, Mr North North, commissioned the Lancaster architects Paley and Austin to rebuild it, and what is now present is mainly their work. Work began in 1879, over 100 men were employed, and it was not completed until 1885. The house and stables have since been converted into several luxury apartments.
The building is constructed in sandstone rubble, with slate roofs. It consists mainly of two ranges on the north and west sides of a courtyard. Its architectural style is a mixture of Elizabethan Revival and Gothic Revival. It is approached by an arched bridge crossing the moat. Its windows are either mullioned or mullioned and transomed, and there are two towers, one of which has two storeys, the other three. Many of the parapets are embattled. Around the building are terraces with bastions.
- English Heritage, "Thurland Castle, Cantsfield (1164439)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 18 November 2012.
- Hartwell, Clare; Pevsner, Nikolaus (2009) , Lancashire: North, The Buildings of England, New Haven and London: Yale University Press, p. 673, ISBN 978-0-300-12667-9
- Brandwood, Geoff; Austin, Tim; Hughes, John; Price, James (2012), The Architecture of Sharpe, Paley and Austin, Swindon: English Heritage, pp. 131, 231, ISBN 978-1-84802-049-8